On August 18, Jeb Bush, governor of Florida from 1999–2007, and Bob Wise, governor of West Virginia from 2001–2005, launched the Digital Learning Council to identify policies that will integrate current and future technological innovations into public education. The Digital Learning Council unites a diverse group of more than fifty leaders from education, government, philanthropy, business, technology, and think tanks to develop the roadmap of reform for local, state and federal lawmakers, and policymakers.
“Technology has the power to customize education for every student in America,” said Bush, cochair of the Digital Learning Council. “Providing a customized, personalized education for students was a dream just a decade ago. Technology can turn that dream into reality today. The Digital Learning Council will develop the roadmap to achieve that ultimate goal.”
Technological innovations have already changed the way the nation works, shops and entertains itself. The Digital Learning Council will lead this national initiative to develop and transform education by moving digital learning to the forefront of education and away from the niche role it plays today. Today, more than 3.5 million students take courses online—including 1.5 million who are educated at home—but that barely scratches the surface of what is possible through technology.
“The members of the Digital Learning Council share a sense of extreme urgency about the need to bring digital learning to every school, every classroom, and every child,” said Wise, cochair of the Digital Learning Council. “We must not squander the opportunity to promote digital innovation to reform our nation’s schools and ensure that all students are prepared to confront the challenges in our economy and society with the tools and skills that digital technology offers.”
There is a wide range of areas within digital learning that the Council will cover, including online and virtual schools, personalized learning, blended learning, digital content, online and mobile social networks, and classroom technology, among other topics. It will report its ongoing discussions online and welcomes input and dialog. The final recommendations of the Digital Learning Council will be released in late November and will be the focus of a nationwide campaign to urge adoption of the policy principles by states, track states’ progress, and encourage best practices.
Learn more about the Digital Learning Council and see a list of its members and special liaisons here.