Liberating Learning: Technology, Politics and the Future of American Education

Terry M. Moe and John E. Chubb
Jossey Bass Publishers
April 2009

The long-awaited and very fine new Chubb-Moe book is now out and you surely ought to read it. Written under the aegis of Hoover's Task Force on K-12 Education,
it takes the discussion of technology's transformative effect on
education to a new level, well beyond Christensen's influential Disrupting Class.
The authors aren't just blue-skying about what technology could do if
given a chance. What's most interesting in this book is its explanation
of how technology will transform the politics of education and thus
rewrite the rules by which it is determined what is given a chance. To
oversimplify outrageously, they believe that inherent in the new
technologies is the capacity to triumph over the usual forces of
resistance to reform and renewal in primary-secondary education. They
cite half a dozen essential characteristics of technology--geographic
dispersion, individualization, transparency, choices, organic evolution,
etc.--that will alter power relationships, end-run or weaken
traditional barriers, and empower agents of change. You can pick up some
of this from their recent debate with Larry Cuban
in the pages of Education Next but to get the full benefit--and provocation--of their analysis you'll want to see the book itself. Start here.

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