Googlification of the Classroom

How Google Took Over the Classroom is an article worth reading. Does your child have a Google account through school? If so, do you have any concerns about it?

Here is one quote from the article:

Google is helping to drive a philosophical change in public education — prioritizing training children in skills like teamwork and problem-solving while de-emphasizing the teaching of traditional academic knowledge, like math formulas.

With the infusion of EdTech and education reform measures, especially Ed Reform 2.0, it seems like talk about education seldom mentions teaching academic knowledge, reading, writing, or arithmetic.

And here’s another quote:

It puts Google, and the tech economy, at the center of one of the great debates that has raged in American education for more than a century: whether the purpose of public schools is to turn out knowledgeable citizens or skilled workers.

I’m not really sure this debate, or even a discussion, has actually taken place. It needs to take place and parents need to be heard. The drive for the workforce pipeline has come from the corporate realm, foundations, and wealthy influential individuals. This drive has set direction for federal and state government. Is a workforce pipeline education what parents really want for their kids or do they want their kids to have an academic education?

This article touches on a lot of issues and raises a lot of questions. If your child has an email account through school, as the parent, were you informed and did you give permission? Are tech companies exploiting public school teachers and students? If so, is it okay for them to do so? Is your child’s school using online programs requiring a student login? If your child’s school is using online programs or any other software programs, have those programs been properly vetted as may be required by board policy?

The Electronic Frontier Foundation report Spying on Students: School-Issued Devices and Student Privacy provides some good questions for parents to ask.

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