• Just Visiting

    A blog by John Warner, author of the story collection Tough Day for the Army, and a novel, The Funny Man, on teaching, writing and never knowing when you’re going to be asked to leave.


Are We Not Teaching Assistants?

We are human infrastructure!

December 11, 2013

Lest we think that concerns over corporate and techno-utopian thinking encroaching on education is overblown, I offer two recent examples.

Exhibit 1.

In discussing Georgia Tech’s online master’s program from it’s College of Computing, Dean Zvi Galil described why he sees it as a “MOOC 2.0.”

“We describe what we [would] do as MOOC 2.0—MOOC plus human infrastructure.”

Are we not teaching assistants?

We are human infrastructure!

Exhibit 2.

Allan Golston, the chief of the Gates Foundation’s education arm, wrote about the foundation’s efforts, along with the Committee for Economic Development, to involve businesses in the push for adoption of the Common Core State Standards.

In making his argument, he says this: “Businesses are the primary consumers of the output of our schools, so it’s a natural alliance.”

To Golston and the Gates Foundation, students = “output.”

These are the people driving our educational destiny. They claim to be investing in student success. Increasingly, it seems that the opposite is true.

I don’t know whether to rage or weep.


In the comments, or on Twitter, we can rage, weep, or even celebrate this trend.



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