Why Normal Arguments for Online Education Don't Apply Right Now

July 7, 2020

I am responding to Joshua Kim’s open letter with regards to the July 6 article “Generals Die in Bed.”

Of course under normal circumstances Mr. Kim’s assertions regarding online instruction are correct. Decades of research and literature no doubt support the effectiveness he suggests. He is obviously an expert.

There is also a great deal of research to support the notion that Air travel is the safest mode of transportation.

What Mr. Kim ignores in defense of his focus is that we are now asking bus drivers to fly airplanes. To help them, we are adding bus route planners to the air traffic control towers. As an airline executive, Mr. Kim is suggesting that we should put our children on the planes, because there is data proving the safety. While we have no facts to argue his safety statistics, I doubt Mr. Kim would put his children on a plane that was about to be flown by Route 14 driver.

There is a major difference between building a disruptive learning environment with focused professionals who have self organized to deliver content versus hastily developed alternatives to in-class instruction delivered by those who have migrated to a career with limited technology.

As ridiculous as the airplane example may be, Mr. Kim is using expired data to allay the fears of millions of parents whose children are being asked to board a flight. The empirical evidence provided is of little value when considering the immediacy of the requirements before educators. Professor Kolnick's expert tone comes from an appreciation of the realities faced this fall, and provides practical guidance not available in the analysis of a dozen online programs designed and delivered over multiple years.

Ron Giordano
College Parent

We have retired comments and introduced Letters to the Editor. Letters may be sent to [email protected].

Read the Letters to the Editor  »

Back to Top