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Rio, March 14th, 2012

The Delay in Education Technology


Dear Sir or Madam: In general, I have to say, education is in the dark ages, no fundamental changes have occurred in a hundred and fifty years. Much has been said about law 5453 of may 26th, 2009, that forbids the use by students, of cellphones, iPods and etc. in classes. We are reminded of this law every single day when someones cellphone rings, and by now for a very long time this law has been used as an excuse for the extreme and terrifying reality of the delay in Brazils education technology, thats because every time any change, is proposed by anyone in a educational environment, the authorities hurry to bring up said law, and afraid of actually having to make some kind of modification, rapidly discard such proposal. I am not saying I disagree with the law, no, I agree with it, until its own extents, what I am saying is that it should not be used as an excuse to keep us students living in the 19th century in terms of education, because the law itself, forbids the use of cellphones, Mp3 players, iPods when those are misused by students in a way, such that will interfere in, and disturb the educational environment, such as a classroom or a library, among others. Some might say, that the free use of tablets and notebooks in classrooms is an extremely liberal and arguable change, I strongly disagree, in my opinion, it is an absurd that in depths of XXI century, in the majority of our schools, students dont have necessary amount of access to educational technology, and are obligated to use paper notebooks and printed textbooks. Not just a waste of money, whats more in such a green mobilization time, this is a major step back in an environmental view. We do have informatics class in most schools nowadays, with labs powered up with not so powered computers, and we definitely do have contact with technology, and that is all wrong. You cant expect students to go from a world where they got constant access to a laptop at home or a smartphone in theyre pocket and come into school and have all that disappear. It is about time we break this obnoxious mentality and system, of having one specific class in a hole week, for all the class to go all the way down to the computer labs, and be able to use a computer. It should be all integrated; we must break

this chain, and explore technology in all the ways possible, because that is why it exists in its primary essence, to help men in its work, and not to be taken away from us. That is why I think in all schools over the country it should be made possible the free use of notebooks and tablets in classes, in order to improve the learning process, making it easier, faster and more exciting for kids, teenagers and teachers. So basically we just need a reset and find a way to fix this. Yours faithfully, Conrad Cerqueira.