There are many things frightening about the latest Big Thing the Feds are pushing - "Competency Based Education" which will have school children as young as kindergarten sitting in front of computers most of their school day and have their skills evaluated on line.
Among the important issues critics have raised are privacy concerns regarding the centralized data collection the system requires; the de-professionalization of teaching as teachers main role is reduced to monitoring students computer usage rather than actually teaching them; the reduction of human interaction with other students and teachers in such away that possibilities for social and emotional learning are destroyed
All of those critiques are powerful- but given the environmental damage in the wake of the Flint water crisis, I have to bring up the issue of the health impact of this kind of pedagogy. Can young children's eyesight be undermined by sitting in front of a computer 6 hours a day when much of their time out of school is spent doing the same thing? Are there dangers of children acquiring carpel tunnel syndrome? Are there skeletal and back injuries that can be acquired by sitting in one place for such a large period of time?
It is really frightening to see how quickly this is being implemented without serious consideration of the Collateral Damage of this pedagogical strategy. It reminds me of the way Common Core was implemented. Especially since huge profits stand to be made by computer manufacturers and software companies- and the cost savings to governments as a result of de-skilling the teaching profession.
So parents need to wake up. Competency Based Education may be a greater danger to their children than Common Core.