Are we Ready for the Google School?
As with many thoughts, it takes the serendipity of intervention to create a blog such as this. There are two events that have motivated this blog, one being the intervention of a a friend and the other a conversation with a teacher. The intervention led to a purchase of a book (What would Google do) which triggered a reflection after the conversation.
The conversation was regarding the use of a learning platform to support students with their learning, it was related to support that I was giving regarding how a learning platform could support parents to support their children to achieve the precious “C” grade in mathematics. This fantastic initiative led to the development of the school’s learning platform being used to identify targets around maths shared with parents. These parents are now using their learning platform to access and comment on these targets. This initiate had led to a number of emails to the teacher requesting further revision links and information. The teacher wanted an online space so that the email conversation was reduced, and that parents would have immediate access to further information.
I suggested the use of a discussion with the parents having control over this space, so that they could have an area for communcation with the school and a network space with other parents. The teacher got extremely nervous about this stating that the parents could gang up against teachers. I tried to invert the conversation saying that the parents could take their frustrations elsewhere, where the schools would have no control or knowldege of the problem, e.g. the local press etc.
From the book “What Would Google do”, the issue around Dell as explained by the author could be the same that schools face with the consumer turning their attention to education, using other social networks to share their frustrations. I feel that the social/education sector is some years behind the commercial sector regarding consumer interaction, essential being the same thing, the purchase (even by taxation) of services such as education.
Are schools planning for this change, are they ready for the consumer impact on their service, are they ready for online reporting parents, are they ready to take the challenge of the google school?
This google school is applies the ideas of understanding that the consumer has the power and through the media of the internet can create the network that can make or break the school as a brand. Are schools ready for this? Or do they see communciation as being one way.
If so then perhaps some schools will feel the the Dell Hell effect.