In fall 2011, Sebastian Thrun, a research professor at Stanford, and Peter Norvig, the top scientist at Google, teamed up to develop and teach a free, online course on artificial intelligence. Their aim, as Norvig said in an impassioned and compelling TED talk, was to develop a course at least as good as, if not better than, the course they teach together at Stanford. They'd put the result online and make it available to everyone, for free.
After years of offering children self-supervised access to the Web, Sugata Mitra says kids can teach themselves. Mitra continues the conversation from earlier this episode by arguing that self-organized classes are the future of education, and he puts forward a bold vision: to build a school in the cloud.
Veteran teacher Rita Pierson believes that relationships are crucial to education. She talks about how classrooms lack the kind of human connections kids need to feel inspired and to learn. Pierson gave her talk as part of the PBS Special TED Talks Education, airing May 7.
Chicago's plan to shut down 54 schools would be the largest school closure in U.S. history. And it has taken a step closer to becoming a reality. After a month of public hearings, officials will hand over reports to the school board with recommendations for how many of the schools in question should be closed. As NPR's Cheryl Corley reports, parents, educators and students in Chicago say they are not ready to quit fighting for their schools.
If you're interested in studying in China, a new scholarship program could help you on your way. Rivaling the prestigious Rhodes scholarships, the new Schwarzman Scholars program was announced recently by Stephen Schwarzman, CEO and co-founder of Blackstone Group, one of the world's biggest private-equity firms.
The financier says he plans to raise $300 million, including $100 million of his own money, to fund a new program aimed at bringing students from around the world to study at Beijing's Tsinghua University.
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - Oklahoma Schools Superintendent Janet Barresi says she will explore all the state's options to ensure that the needs of students and school districts are met following a series of technical glitches in student testing.
Barresi participated in a conference call Wednesday with the president of the testing company, CTB/McGraw Hill, after it experienced problems with online assessments for grades 6 through 12 on Monday and Tuesday.
A contentious battle for a spot on Penn State's board of trustees is dividing the university's alumni community. While some candidates and alums focus on the past, others want to push beyond the abuse scandal that shook the school over the last two years. With so much at stake for the much-loved school, some say the board of trustees election is playing out more like a contentious political race for mayor or Congress, not just a spot on a university board.