Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Dying Inside Ed

A year or so ago, Inside Ed crackled with energy, focusing primarily on city schools and issues therein.

I rarely check it now, but stopped in last week when they were talking about technology, an issue I'm pretty passionate about. It's infuriating to me that the school system blocks so much material, and that teachers cannot override it. Our students deserve the free and open technology that the WWW offers and that most school districts can access. It's not right that I have to create a blog that students can only see from their home computers with clips from Shakespeare movies.

I made a couple of comments last week, and went back to check it out today. It hasn't been updated in 6 days.

The death of Inside Ed has sadly been pretty rapid. If you're looking for a reason why newspapers are dying, the shutting down of interest sites like Inside Ed is one of the reasons.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

I agree. Since Sara left, the blog has declined quite a bit.

A BCPSS Parent said...

It's declined because of less posts, which in turn has lead to people not looking at the blog often, which in turn has lead to less thoughtful comments (still seem to be quite a few ignorant comments), which in turn leads to less people looking at the blog... It's a depressing downward cycle. Sadly I don't see anything stepping up to be a place of thoughtful discussion on City School issues.

There are still a few blogs that I keep up with, but all-in-all I've lost a sense of community that I used to have.

Simon said...

although, i've heard there was quite a bit of a rumble down at north ave as a result of some of the comments made on insideEd re: technology. look for positive change before the end of the school year.

Epiphany in Baltimore said...

Wow, Simon, that's great news. I'd love to hear more about it whenever I see you next (Friday Happy Hour? We'll be at Joe Squared I'm guessing).

Since I posted this, the blog is aflutter with activity, too. Or least postings.

Anonymous said...

I work with the Erate program for our system of 10 charter schools. If your school receives ANY Erate funding, then you must have a filter in place to comply with the Children's Internet Protection Act (CIPA). There should be a process for unblocking, but it's not always possible to unblock every viable site. For example, there are some great things on UTube, but it can't be unblocked because the unblocking can't be isolated to a single item. Our 10 schools received $1.8 Million this past year, so it's important for us to comply. If your district doesn't have a process for unblocking, then you need to be jumping up and down to demand one. And if they tell you a site can't be unblocked, you need to be aware that there can be quite valid reasons for it -- most of them related to $$$. Erate pays up to 90% of the phone bills, the internet connectivity, the network transport bandwidth, the network equipment, etc.