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On LearnBoost's blog today, co-founder Raphael Corrales wrote what I've been thinking for a long time: "Techies care about education, but not enough."

He observes a pretty common phenomenon: education related articles make it to the Hacker News front page. And then, a few months later, the same content appears there. The most recent examples: Dan Meyer's TED talk on changing math instruction and the Khan Academy.

Oh, techies care about education for sure. I mean, who doesn't care about education?!

But, do enough techies care about education to help make a substantial change in education? There's some talk, but is there enough action? Raphael contends, "at the intersection of technology and education, it's probably safe to say there aren't enough 'doers'."

One of the commenters (who certainly counts as a 'doer' as he's building a drupal-based social learning platform) suggests that the problems in education are largely structural not technological. Me, I tend to see structural and technological problems as intertwined. We can't address either one or the other. We can't really separate the best environments for teaching and learning with technology from best environments for simply teaching and learning.

I think there's a big role for techies to plan in reshaping education -- structurally and technologically. I do think techies care. But as the LearnBoost blog asks, how do we get more folks in the tech world to innovate in the education space? (I'd add the corollary: How do we make sure those companies to listen to teachers?

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Audrey Watters


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