Computers for Schools.. America's Injustice

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If India can provide teachers and students computers for just $25, why can't America do the same? A school near Chicago has three floors, no air conditioning and now finally has a computer lab while other schools have some air conditioning or total air conditioning. Some schools have 400 students and 3 computer labs. When will we ever end the American Educational  injustice of unequal education??? 


jeffbiss's picture
No one has ever explained ot

No one has ever explained ot me why computers are essential. I don't see that. What is essential is a good educational foundation, which doesn't imply that computers are necessary. after all, look at what the pencil and paper era produced in Einstein, Bell, and Copernicus. What seems important is to ensure that the school is structurally sound, the teachers are good, and that the parents engaged.

Dan4liberty's picture
Then why does the rest of the

Then why does the rest of the World think it's important, especially India, a third world country think it's important to get their populace computer savvy, and for $35 a pop. There are schools with the computers sitting on the shelves becasue the communities don't have the money to hook them up. The communities that have them are in the wealthier neighborhoods and do think that it is important that their kids have computer intelligence. It seems to me you are living in the past with a one room school mentality. I worked for a living and had to learn how to use a computer because the industry I worked in required I learn and use their system or find another job. Wake up!!!!!!!!! I hope this explains it Lucy.

captbebops's picture
I'm a computer programmer and

I'm a computer programmer and have even taught computer classes.  Apparently we have a lot of naive people who believe their kid is going to become the next Bill Gates if he has a computer.  Not so.  It's like music: either you have a talent for it or you don't.  It's good for students to learn to use computers but that doesn't mean a computer per student.

As for supplying computers we throw away tons of computers every day because they're "too slow" or have corrupt hard drives.  Put Linux on them.  OH!  That's not a corporate OS is it!  Must be a "commie" OS.  But it is more secure and not as bloated as Windows (and of course you can't put a Mac OS on anything but an overpriced Apple computer legally).  Linux is free and open source and will run much faster that Windows on older machines.

And I should add that the programmer market is flooded anyway.  Look for something else to train students for.


jeffbiss's picture
Dan4liberty, Quote:Then why


Then why does the rest of the World think it's important, especially India, a third world country think it's important to get their populace computer savvy, and for $35 a pop.

Good question. I agree with the good Captain overall. However, I think that in order to learn on a computer the fundamentals must be in place, such as knowing how to read and being able to comprehend what one reads, and understanding arithmetic and the underlying concepts. Computers have a place, especially because they are ubiquitous, but shouldn't be the measure of a cirriculum. Also, computers, as captbebops states, are a commodity and as such waste resources and should be properly evaluated. So, maybe instead of a laptop for each kid, a thin client setup may be better and easier to update and maintain. Then there is the reality that many kids have computers and may not require one to be provided by the school.

captbebops's picture
I think the reference was

I think the reference was also to the $35 pad that India thinks it can produce though I'm not sure how because the COG has to be more than that.  However $99 Android tablets are already on the market so it may not be so far fetched.  But Jeff is right basic reading and writing is important if you are going to use these devices with one caveat you can provide some automated tutors on computers (pardon the rhyme).   Also learning to type efficiently is very important.  I learned to type in high school and it has opened door to me all through life including computer jobs way back around 1980.  Voice recognition is getting better but typing is still faster plus more accurate.