As failing socialized education once more is cutting teachers and looking to pour federal tax paid money to save salaries of some of them, why not do something different: cut textbook costs by delivering learning content using mobiles. Roughly speaking, one teacher’s salary of $100,000 could provide 100 students with a smart phone for each and an access plan for each lasting many months.
But why fire the teacher? Why spend more at the federal level, increasing the deficit? Why cut down more trees to create paper to print resources that are out-of-date before ink is rolled?
Instead, we can chop down the local textbook/analog budget, then use the money saved to equip students with mobiles. That way, we keep the teachers out of the budget cutting morass. By saving billions through virtual resources, money remains for human teachers.
There is a picture of Congressional Appropriations Committee Chairman David Obey in an article today in Politico: Dems eye stimulus to pay teachers. There is no suggestion in the Politico report of any answer to school money woes except to fire teachers or pay them by sending federal dollars to states. Obey, a chastened liberal is quitting Congress — yet another sign that the socialist solutions he has long supported are not working.
Education needs something new, and we have it! In fact pivotal positive innovation is not only possible, but unstoppable. Wrongheaded actions like perpetuating the status quo through federal money dumps slow innovation down, especially for the failing schools that are perpetuating a dependent class. But as the Obeys fade from the failing big government era, we will enter a global golden age of learning.
Handschooling is a major driver toward that golden age. As it delivers the global knowledge commons online, handschooling is moving learning back to the local level and into the hands of individual learners.
Let’s use the money crunch that is worrying Obey’s brow. It is an opportunity to speed up the switch to virtual resources and save some teachers — and quite a few trees while we are at it.
First, who is the father of Jack and Jill: Who is John Galt? Wikipedia give this answer:
As the plot [of Ayn Rand's novel Atlas Shrugs] unfolds, Galt is acknowledged to be a creator and inventor who symbolizes the power of the individual capitalist. He serves as an idealistic counterpoint to the social and economic structure depicted in the novel. The depiction portrays a society based on oppressive bureaucratic functionaries and a culture that embraces the stifling mediocrity and egalitarianism of socialistic idealism. In this popular mass ideology, the industrialists of America were a metaphorical Atlas of Greek mythology, holding up the world, whom Galt convinces to “shrug,” by refusing to lend their productive genius to the regime any longer.
Jack and Jill Galt are individual youngsters who have shrugged off the oppressive bureaucratic functionaries and a culture that embraces the stifling mediocrity and egalitarianism of socialistic education.
Where is Galt’s Gulch for Jack and Jill?
In Atlas Shrugged, Galt’s Gulch was a hidden valley in Colorado where the great men and women of mind and action went to live when they abandon the increasingly slave-state inclinations of a decaying United States – to go on strike – thereby withdrawing the only thing supporting the parasites and looters. (Wikipedia)
For Jack and Jill, Galt’s Gulch is in a virtual place that they hold in their hand. It is the new place where communication, commerce, entertainment, and many other things are happening for individuals. The key word there is “individual.” When you interact with the virtual online world through your mobile device, there may be other individuals out there — BUT you are in full power over what you are doing. Mediocrity is not imposed. There is no limit to your pursuit of excellence.
Galt’s Gulch is where students go who refuse to let their productive genius be stunted by the education regime any longer. Jack and Jill Galt can read because they are handschooled.
NOTE: This essay was inspired by an article in today’s New York Times: “Judge Blocks Closing of 19 New York City Schools” — a sickening depiction of oppressive bureaucratic functionaries and a culture that embraces the stifling mediocrity, as Rand wrote. All it takes for kids in this picture — as for more privileged youngsters — to “Go Galt” is a mobile internet browser, which most of them have already. Trusting individual kids is the solution to failing education now that all they need to learn is in their hands. While mayors, the President, bureaucrats, and unions battle over school control, the individuals students in Galt Gulch will be learning to read, doing their physics, and mastering history that is unbiased by limiting standards.