New forms of educational software are attempting to transform the world of education, but the technology certainly has a long way to go before it can replace traditional forms of teaching. A public school in Silicon Valley recently launched a trial-run math course entirely reliant on software by New Classrooms called Teach for One, but returned to the traditional curriculum after many parents had complaints about the performance of the program. The intended goal of educational software is to provide a more tailored curriculum to better suit the needs of each student. However, it is important to have seamless coding and an effective interface to effectively change the current education environment.
Many schools around the world are currently debating how and whether to introduce technology into classrooms. On one hand, technology is a crucial element in today’s world, and education technology could be an important means of more effectively teaching students the material and increasing their understanding of technology. On the other, parents are most comfortable with teacher-led brick and mortar classrooms because they feel there are less unknowns and a lower potential for error. Technology entering the education world is facing some challenges, but could prove to change classrooms for the better.
It is important to recognize how education technology could potentially impact lower-income areas. In the case in Silicon Valley, the higher-income, better educated parents had the highest number of complaints about Teach for One. This may be because parents of students who are lucky enough to receive an education from experienced and knowledgeable teachers do not see a problem with the current education system. However, the quality of the public school districts across the nation is highly varied, and lower income areas could benefit greatly from a more personalized, yet streamlined classroom experience. Many non-profits, tech billionaires and investors are pouring resources into EdTech, which could later benefit struggling school districts that need assistance paying for the resources. New technology and resources could allow for beneficial change across the country and potentially the world in the coming years.
While the potential benefits of EdTech are evident, it goes to show the extensive process required to integrate technology into a new realm. New Classrooms claimed that coding errors were rare, but because of the amount of information required in the software and the new interface, there is a lot that can go wrong. Emerging businesses like New Classrooms are facing high competition, such as, Khan Academy, which offers free online courses on a variety of subjects. It is becoming a race to who can offer public schools the most effective education technology, at the most reasonable price. Even then, the companies may face continued pushback from parents who do not want to see entirely software based courses. It will be interesting to watch how classrooms change in the coming years, as EdTech businesses continue to innovate and schools debate the role of technology in education.