So often in education, IT policy seems to be dictated on the whole by people whose ignorance of IT is dwarfed only by their fear of it.
As with every new form of technology viz: the printed word, television, radio and now the web, we are told we must protect the young from the dangers that are brought-in by the new.
Clamp-downs are called for by people who worry about the privacy of young people – at the same time as these same people introduce databases, CCTV cameras and all the other paraphernalia of a police state into our schools – removing the very privacy they shout-out to protect.
Social workers foam at the mouth as crime statistics are trotted out to show a massive increase in cyber-crime – up massively when we compare stats from when the crime didn’t exist.
The future is undoubtedly in the cloud, where funnily enough the feet of these ‘high heid yins’ also reside. The future is also in mobile devices with your average school being one of only two places in the world where mobiles are banned…the other? Taliban controlled Afghanistan. Maybe the troops need to liberate the learners instead of pummelling the Afghans into yet more rubble.
In the eyes of these leaders: Web 2.0 is Web 2.NO.
YouTube is an evil twin brother of…social networking and they all must be banned lest our youth actually do something as bad as…learn, collaborate and share with their peers and the world around them.
Just last week, as I was extolling the virtues of a VLE, I was told off because the idea came from outwith my local authority.
The irony of being told not to utilise for pupils a world-wide resource because the source wasn’t local enough, after they scoffed at the thought of unblocking YouTube for teacher use – in an era when few can afford textbooks shows that Dunning-Kruger is alive and well.
or as Burns put it:
such a parcel of rogues in a nation.