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Recommendation - 5.4

All learners will have engaging and empowering learning experiences both in and outside of school that prepare them to be active, creative, knowledgeable, and ethical participants in our globally networked society.

To meet this goal, we recommend the following action:

5.4 Recommendation: Rethink basic assumptions in our education system that inhibit leveraging technology to improve learning, starting with our current practice of organizing student and educator learning around seat time instead of the demonstration of competencies.

To realize the full potential of technology for improving performance at all levels of our education system while increasing productivity, we must remove the process and structural barriers to its broad adoption. States and education leadership organizations should work together to identify and rethink basic assumptions in our education system, starting with but not limited to the measurement of educational attainment through seat time. Other assumptions that should be reexamined are the organization of students into age-determined groups, the structure of separate academic disciplines, and the organization of learning into classes of roughly equal size. Educational institutions should explore the use of online learning and combining offline and online learning to provide options for flexibility in restructuring and providing additional learning time. When new processes and structures require policy, legislative, and funding changes, the Department of Education should lead or support the efforts to make those changes.

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