Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Just heard from another district re: filter issues

At a meeting today with some tech integrators from a nearby county I was informed about yet another district that is fighting against the filter. It's so bad they can't even see the Smithsonian Museum site. All blogs - blocked. And the list went on and on.

You KNOW this is my hot button. I firmly believe that the US cannot afford to block its youth from the world in the name of CIPA. The law was never intended for this, and we don't have time to waste. There is a race going on in this world, and as Thomas Friedman said, "Nobody Races you to the bottom."

As I said before, imagine this. You call a meeting of the parents in your district to tell them that you'd LIKE to be teaching with blogs , and you'd LIKE to be collaborating with students from around the world using a wiki, and you'd LIKE to be using Google Docs, but you can't. A foreign government is blocking it all. See if they don't want to wage war.

Now, sit down and write a letter to those parents explaining why your filter is so outrageously restrictive that kids can't even see the Smithsonian and they can't even use Edublogs or wikispaces. Just see if you can honestly justify that filtering policy. You cannot.

It's not a matter of IF this kind of outrageous practice will end, only When. We don't have time to waste. DEMAND that the filter be opened up. DEMAND a world class education for your kids! You certainly won't get it if they're blocked out of so much.

It's time that the Principals and Curriculum Directors step up and insist that changes be made. Or, does the Curriculum answer to the Technology? If your district's filter is nothing like this one, then you've got work to do.

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