Sunday, October 16, 2011

Digital Learning conference: Union protestors’ chants ring hollow

Education Week reports (Subscription?) that a digital learning conference in San Francisco last week led to protests by individuals who “echoed” sentiments from national union leaders.

Regarding the latest report from the effort led by former governors Jeb Bush (Florida) and Bob Wise (West Virginia), the EdWeek article contained the following observations:

“Notably absent from the report's endorsers were either the National Education Association or the American Federation of Teachers, the nation's two largest teachers' unions, with then-NEA executive director John I. Wilson calling the suggestions "corporate" and lacking legitimate teacher input.”

Well, time for a little truth here. When I was researching my Kentucky-specific Digital Learning Now! report, I asked the Kentucky Education Association for input on multiple occasions. In the end, our state’s largest teachers’ union declined to provide any input.

In fact, my report does have teacher input in several forms, along with input from many other great sources including Kentucky Commissioner of Education Terry Holliday, the Kentucky Educational Professional Standards Board’s Phil Rogers, other state education organizations, district technology coordinators, local school district superintendents and the very fine folks at Kentucky’s totally on line digital high school, the Barren Academy of Virtual and Expanded Learning.

But, the union totally opted out.

Keep that in mind as you reread the EdWeek comments above about the teachers unions fussing about a lack of their inputs.

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