The Gates Effect

Wendy Zellner, Fast Company, Jul 14, 2006
Commentary by Stephen Downes

I will grant that the Gates Foundation contributions to education in the U.S. are staggering. And I will grant that rigor, relevance and relationships will, in the main, have a beneficial effect on students. Spend enough money and you can make this happen. But the problem - the real problem - faced by the educational system is how to provide this to everyone equitably, and especially how to do this in an environment where people want to spend less, not more, on social services. I'd like to see the Gates Foundation succeed, and not just in the United States. And I applaud the effort. And I am aware that what we are seeing today is the investigation, the research - and not the solution, as articles such as the present one seem to imply. At least, I hope so.
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