I’ll have to wear my son’s shirt again, because I must have been in the zone yesterday. It was a fantastic morning with just over 700 educators from central Ontario yesterday. The address was also videocast to eight other locations across the Bluewater District on Ontario.Â I talked about the stories around education, the millennial generation, and closed with information about what I call, contemporary literacy. I had lots of conversations afterward, during lunch, and during an afternoon workshop that served as a follup.
The workshop began with a deep and sometimes very animated conversation about education, the future, today’s child, and about the new story. I learned a lot, and also recorded it, hoping to make this discussion part of an upcoming podcast. One theme that connected well with conversations I’ve had in the U.S. and other writing I’ve done is the challenges of Being Digital in a rural area. A lot of the teachers do not enjoy broadband Internet at home, because the service is not offer so far away from a town, and they seem pessimistic about its coming anytime soon.
As I recall, (I don’t have time to look it up right now) one of the findings of a recent Pew in American Life report was that one of the only late-adopting demographics that is not seeing an increase in broadband access is rural populations. When we rely solely on the market to drive penetration of digital networked information, then rural areas will continue to be left out.
I heard on the radio that Ontario is enjoying a 13 billion dollar (cd) surplus. It seems to me, and this is just me, that expanding the reach of convenient digital networked content could do a great deal to strengthen Ontario’s economic position in the future, and perhaps even slow the brain-drain that is being experienced by most rural locations.
That’s just me!
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