_ People (mostly with Republican leanings) are making profits with hospitals, prisons, and schools. Next, someone will figure out (if they haven’t already) how to make money from policing and fire fighting.
More disturbing news from the Land of (nothing is) Free and the Home of the (dead) Brave, was revealed by Gail Collins in the New York Times. And, of course, it’s all about money.
What kind of adults/citizens will develop from internet schools? Ones that never learned the lessons from interacting on the playground...or memorized lines for a school play...or been forced to recite a poem in front of their class...or...I can’t imagine interpersonal skills being taught online. Group projects will be impossible. Debate will be neither heard nor will the concept be understood. How does a child learn about social networks, much less even recognize them? One can have “Friends”, but not actual friends.
In the worst case, characters suited for horror or crime movies are being nurtured...or worse. These kids will miss out finding role models in their teachers...or having a crush on one. They will miss out on dating, broken hearts, and the school prom. Education is not simply rote learning of words found on a screen. Schooling by internet is like swallowing a pill for nourishment, instead of savoring a meal cooked from scratch with fresh ingredients.
Humans are social animals, as explained in a New Yorker article on psychology by David Brooks.
He quotes a neuroscientist, who explains the importance of human interaction to fulfillment and happiness.
“I’ve come to think that flourishing consists of putting yourself in situations in which you lose self-consciousness and become fused with other people, experiences, or tasks. It happens sometimes when you are lost in a hard challenge, or when an artist or a craftsman becomes one with the brush or the tool. It happens sometimes while you’re playing sports, or listening to music or lost in a story, or to some people when they feel enveloped by God’s love. And it happens most when we connect with other people. I’ve come to think that happiness isn’t really produced by conscious accomplishments. Happiness is a measure of how thickly the unconscious parts of our minds are intertwined with other people and with activities. Happiness is determined by how much information and affection flows through us covertly every day and year.”
I doubt that internet schools will produce happy citizens, the pursuit of which is promised by the Declaration of Independence (although most believe this to be an inalienable right).
I have no doubt that each student will produce profit for someone...someone with no interest in young people, no interest in education, and no interest in the future of the country...in other words, someone greedy and self-centered.
Prior to writing novels, the author enjoyed a multifaceted career: from decorated combat aviator to advertising professional to global communications director of a major consumer brand. He has traveled the world and met sports, film and television stars, political leaders, and royalty. He graduated from Middlebury College, is married, lives in Germany, and has two grown children.