Steve Jobs

Plenty has been said about Steve Jobs in general and about his views on education policy in particular.  And Apple’s role in education technology is substantial, to say the least.

This weekend I was sitting on the beach at a wedding and music was playing from a remote speaker with an iPod stuck in it.  When the service started the officiant read from an iPad.  Trivial, yes, but illustrative of the ways that Jobs changed how we live and genuinely changed industries.  You can’t say that about too many people and I do think over time we’ll think about him the same way we think about Edison or Ford.

Jay Greene posted some of Jobs views about education and schools – and Jobs didn’t mince words. Yet while Jobs was clearly frustrated with the state of education it’s worth nothing that his wife, Laurene Powell, has committed herself to improving things.  She’s on the boards of several education non-profits (including Teach For America, New Schools Venture Fund, and Stand For Children) and she co-founded College Track.

Disc – It’s a small world out there, Bellwether works with Stand, New Schools, and College Track (and we like Apple technology).

7 Replies to “Steve Jobs”

  1. I want to agree that Steve Jobs has made such a profound impact in our world today. You can clearly see the impact he has made within education. He clearly wanted to make a difference in education and has done so with his creations such as the ipad and even the ipod. Even though this sounds trivial, the use of the ipod within my special education classroom has given students a calming sense while reading, helps them focus while using computer programs, particularly a math program called ALEKS, and has promoted positive behaviors. Thank you Steve Jobs for your devotion and fight for better education.

  2. I have been thinking about Jobs a lot these last few days, and just recently read his commencement address to Stanford graduates in 2005. The comment that stood out to me was, how his life was not defined by his failures, but how he reacted and learned from them. I think this is an idea that all people should follow.

    His innovations have already and will continue to be utilized in education. I have seen firsthand how the iPad has made reading exciting for kids. Students will benefit for many years with the technology that Steve Jobs made available.

  3. I agree that Steve Jobs has made a significant impact in our world. I have seen in my four years of teaching the difference technology can make on a students learning. In a culture where students are accustomed to the wonderful opportunities that technology can provide it is almost necessary that the education system is just as advanced. The first school I worked at was a small private school with minimal funding. We had outdated computer systems and the most advanced way we had of presenting material was an overhead projector. My students all had learning disabilities and at times I feel that having technological opportunities would have stimulated their motivation. At the current school I teach at we are fortunate enough to have IPADS, Smartboards, and computer access for all students. I see the difference this makes everyday. Students are engaged and these tools provide opportunities for the educator to create and provide lessons that meet the needs of all students. The opportunities that Steve Jobs provided will forever change our education system.

  4. I’ll chime in and say that my urban charter school has no Apple technology, and yet our score are tops in the state and kids are still engaged in learning, reading and math. I’ve also seen how a teacher can rely on technology as a crutch so that a lesson can be flashy but insubstantial.

  5. Has anyone ever done or seen much research on how much benefit education non-profits have contributed to student success? I wonder what the cost/benefit ratio is…of the wealthy who sit on boards and make contributions which help dozens of students. College Track spends $3 million per year on a few dozen kids. And all Stand for Children does is beg and ask people for personal information.

  6. We are all united in gratitude for an extremely talented man who shared his gifts with the rest of us. In his wisdom he understood the importance of the teacher, a person “who incites your curiosity and feeds your curiosity.” Yes, indeed. Wise words from a wise man.

    As a fitting tribute to Mr. Jobs, I’d love to see fellowships for talented and successful teachers. These people could have a year of two at a distinguished university such as Stanford or Berkeley where they have the time to study, reflect and collaborate with others. After they obtain their advanced degrees, they would enjoy professional autonomy at their respective schools.

    Nothing will improve education in the United States more than well-educated, appreciated and inspirational teachers. Steve Jobs knew that.

  7. Walter Isaacson wrote an awesome biography of Einstein, now he has written one on Jobs. The audiobook version, of Steve Job’s biography will be released October 24th through iTunes and I love the notion of listening to Job’s biography on a iPhone.
    We are going to miss Steve Jobs so much. He was such a great genius. I always felt that he was some how a friend creating all these awesome products. But, he was so private, I really know very little about him. I hope the Isaacson book will be a celebration of all that was good about him, and solve the mystery of what him such an extraordinary man of vision and innovation.

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