Harnessing technology to create efficiencies and revolutionize education hasn’t had the intended impacts in the past. In part that’s because we ascribe a magical quality to it and try to force it into paradigms that it was never designed to do. Technology should be a method of enhancement, never a cost-efficient replacement for face-to-face learning experiences, or a smokescreen to distract from other cost-efficiencies.

No amount of artificial intelligence or blended learning or Smart-this or i-that is going to be able to replace the pedagogical benefits of a highly trained educator who can help students gain and apply knowledge (Judaic or otherwise) to help them make sense of the world in which they live. Trying to harness technology to supplant these professionals in search of some perceived vast savings that has yet to be realized is a fool’s errand.

Russel Neiss, “Jewish Ed Tech Macher Says Tech Is Not – NOT – the Answer to Affordability“, eJewish Philanthropy (19 May 2013)

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