I’ve been following a discussion on NEA’s LinkedIn group about the value of iPads as an instructional tool. Note that the online reference was to “iPads,” not “tablets.”
We need to teach the prudent and humane use of technology as well as how to maximize its potential. But when we select one company’s product, parents and students perceive us as endorsing that brand, a fact not lost on technology vendors. This ethical dilemma didn’t exist prior to the introduction of modern educational technology.
I’m not anti-Apple: I myself have and use both an iPad and an Android tablet. And yes, I know that the operating systems developed by Google and Microsoft are single-brand products as well. I’ll concede that Apple’s closed supply chain means greater control by them and less frustration for users. But it also means that Apple has a far more visible brand identity.
Outside the schools, the technological ecosystem is highly diverse. My concern is that kids will graduate unprepared for it.