The world is our classroom

If teachers, or rather more broadly ‘educators’, in order to embrace teachers, tutors, lecturers and others across all formal teaching sectors, are to be any kind of ‘scientist’ or ‘engineer’ then not only do they need to be qualified and certified, but they need to be paid accordingly – we are not.

A previous Vice-Chancellor of The Open University had to resign when he inferred, or said, that the ‘educators’ at the OU were not ‘teachers’ – but rather facilitators and moderators. Was he forced out because people did not like the inference that they were not the vocational, reputationally more valued ‘teacher’?

I moderate a number of courses online – I did not design or write them and I don’t deliver them either. Call me anything but a teacher. What we need is what e-learning web agencies have had for two decades: a team that includes subject matter experts, coders, writers, visualisers and producers. They deliver ‘education’ collectively but are not teachers. They get paid 60% to 100% more than classroom teachers too.

We have a long, long way to go down the road to deliver better, more consistent, equitable learning. It is still the case that the best education is bought by the priveleged for the few: in Britain as in Ghana (I have a friend who recently wrote her PhD thesis on the state of educaiton in the country).

Once all content is delivered electronically (goodbye text books), and once everyone has the device and broadbend to enjoy this content, then why deliver a class to a college cohort of 50 when if you’re considered to be one of the best at the subject in the land you could be leading a ‘department’ that teachers it to 5,000 across the country – 5,000.000 around the world.

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