Clay Shirky on higher education:
Instead, like every threatened profession, I see my peers arguing that we, uniquely, deserve a permanent bulwark against insurgents, that we must be left in charge of our destiny, or society will suffer the consequences. Even the record store clerks tried that argument, back in the day. In the academy, we have a lot of good ideas and a lot of practice at making people smarter, but it’s not obvious that we have the best ideas, and it is obvious that we don’t have all the ideas. For us to behave as if we have—or should have—a monopoly on educating adults is just ridiculous.
And so I know the key word in that last sentence is “adults,” that thinking about schools for “kids” is different, that it’s not a choice (for most), that it’s a much harder structure to challenge.
To think that even our schools will remain in either spirit or structure 25 years from now simply because we’re too important, too valuable to be taken away by the “insurgents” is equally as “ridiculous.” The buildings may well remain, the requirement of “school” may still exist, but what happens inside those spaces will surely be very, very different.
Who, I wonder, effects that redesign?