Tuesday, August 26, 2008

INTEL calls for ED reform


But what seemed to resonate most with the educators on hand was the keynote address delivered by Intel Board Chair Craig Barrett on Aug. 19. His central message: We must achieve global education reform and bring greater innovation to the teaching of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM).

Barrett visits more than 30 countries a year, he said, and has worked in the technology industry for 40 years. His experience has led him to a primary realization: We need to bring technology to all countries, improve people's lives, and connect the world.



Sudhakar said...

Craig's comments are right on the money. Craig himself is one of the most respected business leaders in the country. He leads a company that still maintains the world #1 spot in semiconductors the old fashioned way - through hard work and innovation. What some people may not know is that he was a professor of Materials Science at Stanford University, before he joined Intel. That makes his comments on education even more significant. Intel hires around the world - about three quarters of its business is outside the US, and it has large campuses in every major country. So, it is easy for him to see where the best minds are educated, more than any government or education official. He has testified in Congress numerous times on behalf of better STEM education in this country, and the system has stubbornly resisted change for three decades. Certainly, those who see his speech as America bashing don't get it. He is one of America's best friends, just like our true personal best friends who are not afraid to tell it like it is. Certainly not like our elected officials who keep sugarcoating the bad news to keep themselves in office.

Anonymous said...

I agree - but the bashing is coming from professional teacher organizations, like NCTM, MAA, TERC, UW LIFE, ... Curriculum is connected to the publishers and to some extent the standards movement.

Revamp standards by nationalizing STEM curriculum would be the best policy and alleviate the growing public concern. I would include computer programming of which there is far less now than before.

I learned today our district dropout rate is the lowest in the county - only 12%, we're 45% Title I, and 40% Latino. It felt really good to report back to an organization that is maximizing learning - we also send a larger percentage of Latinos to 4-year colleges than any other district in our county. My Washington State experience really made me appreciate how lucky I was before.

The teachers in our district certainly avoided a pitfall by not adopting reform math and in the two years I've been gone, they are eliminating the non-AG classes in favor of more challenging classwork for students. Something myself and others advocated ten years ago with the Urban League.

Stanford has offered to partner with our district and I hear more about them at every meeting I attend. I think this is good news for us.