Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Thoughts on what the Khan Academy means for the future of education

My mother forwarded a link to The Worth of Khan. This column has some thoughts about what kind of impact online education systems like the Khan Academy will have on the future of education.

The Khan Academy is trying to provide a free classroom to the world over the internet. Looking at their vast selection it appears they are very comprehensive.

Bruno Behrend concludes his column with this:

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It is time to question the meaning of the words “education reform” and the investment in reforming the current system. Once the automobile was invented, there was no need for “buggy whip reform” or “horse turnaround plans.” Mr. Khan, and those like him, have exposed the current system for the obsolete monopoly that it is. This article lays waste to the idea of “reforming” the current system. The best thing we can do is rapidly manage the transition to an entirely new education model.
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The last five decades of educational reform have done little to improve the effectiveness of government schools. Maybe Bruno Behrend is correct, systems like the Khan Academy may provide for a completely new approach. It will be interesting to see.

3 comments:

Susan Ryan said...

Henry, I was so happy to see Bruno's name on your blog. He is a freedom loving guy from Illinois who would have homeschooled his son if he could have. He's always offered great support for Illinois homeschoolers from a legal perspective.
I learned of Khan Academy from my 16 year old boys, and I'm learning even more from you. It is so interesting and exciting to see how education is becoming so open source. Seems like we homeschoolers don't have to look as hard as we used to 10 years ago.

Luke said...

I love the idea of Khan Academy--and with free, easily available video hosting and web hosting in the form of blogs it's easily replicated by anyone who is willing to record their lessons. But for as much as I like the idea... I've never actually turned to him to brush up on my knowledge.

Why is that? That question, I think, is an important part of figuring out how to leverage these powerful tools available to us.

~Luke

Henry Cate said...

Susan - I've come across Bruno a couple of times. He does seem like a good guy.

Luke - I agree, free and informative videos could have a very positive affect on the world. I hope lots of people take advantage of the videos.