In Saving Schools: From Horace Mann to Virtual Learning (Harvard University Press, 2010), leading education scholar Paul E. Peterson places today's education debate in historical context by showing how school reformers have centralized political control without accomplishing their goals for customized learning. With the advent of virtual education, Peterson argues, we now have an opportunity to allow each student direct access to the information he or she needs. The result could be a customized system in which families have greater choice and control over their children’s education.
On April 13, the Brookings Institution will host a policy discussion on the potential of virtual education. Peterson will address how the possibilities unleashed by technological innovation, when coupled with the economic impact of the ever-rising cost of traditional schooling, have created an environment for a significant educational transformation. Moderated by Brown Center Director Grover J. Whitehurst, a panel of experts including Andy Rotherham, co-founder of Bellwether Education; Julie Young, president & CEO of Florida Virtual Schools; and Kathering Mangu-Ward, senior editor of Reason magazine, will offer their reactions to Peterson’s book and their own views about the merits of virtual education.
After the program, panelists will take audience questions.