$64 million for out-of-date and educationally generic textbooks?

Reuven Carlyle, Website, Oct 18, 2011
Commentary by Stephen Downes

Open educational resources (OERs) are beginning to capture the imagination of some politicians. No wonder, with such big dollars at stake. A state representative in Washington, Reuven Carlyle, observes, "the State of Washington sends $64,344,99.66 from Olympia to our 295 school districts per year to outfit our 1,034,153 students with textbooks." $64 million per year would probably be enough to create and distribute open online textbooks for the entire nation! Carlyle writes, "The apple to apple comparison of cost, per textbook, will be about $6 for Open Education Resources instead of $120-plus for proprietary, commercial textbooks." Related, from David Wiley: The $5 textbook.
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