A Call To Arms

Now that Pres-elect Obama has promised to modernize US school, the EdTech Action network wants you to write your congressman and tell them how to do it. Used their online template to make your voice heard.
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Want to help shape the modernization of American schools? Check out the EdTechAction Network's initiatives and sign the petition. From their site:

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Dear Next President,

We believe that it is critical that our next President make ensuring our nation’s K-12 students receive a 21st Century Education a top priority.

Recent data shows that the stakes for our students acquiring 21st Century technology skills and knowledge have never been higher in terms of their own and our nation’s economic prosperity. For instance:

  • The Department of Labor reports that out of 55 industries, education is last in its use of technology.
  • In the majority of schools, teachers and students cannot maximize the potential of technology.
  • By 2010, if current trends continue, more than 90 percent of all scientists and engineers will be living in Asia.
  • Since the 1960s, the demand for skills has changed significantly – the demand for routine manual task skills have decreased, while the demand for non-routine interactive task skills have increased significantly.

Our children not only deserve but require an American education that harnesses the power of technology to individualize learning, one that ensures that they are prepared to compete academically for top grades and globally for the best paying jobs. In our estimation, a 21st Century Educationshould include the following elements:

  • Every student learning in an environment that reflects the technology replete world in which we live, including ready access to sophisticated computing devices, instructionally sound digital content that facilitates self-paced learning, and broadband-level bandwidth necessary to support cutting-edge digital applications and services.
  • Every teacher possessing the technology tools and skills necessary to use technology in the classroom and to integrate technology and digital resources seamlessly into classroom learning.
  • Every parent utilizing technology to monitor student academic progress, communicate with educators regarding academic matters, and access online and digital resources to assist their children’s studies.

We call on the next President, in partnership with Congress, to take these bold steps to ensure a 21st Century Education, including:

  • Supporting access for all students to technology and the Internet.
  • Increasing federal funding for education technology through the Department of Education’s budget.
  • Preserving the E-Rate and providing robust bandwith in all classrooms to allow students and educators to use the cutting-edge digital applications and services.
  • Incorporating technology literacy and facility into state teacher standards, teacher training, and professional development.
  • Encouraging student technology literacy by the eighth grade.

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