For the last several years, the Milken Family Foundation has been studying the significant impact education technology can have on student learning. The use of modern information and communications technology properly employed should be commonplace in the life of every school, teacher and student. Needless to say, however, this is not the case. Indeed, the K-12 education industry is the only "Knowledge business" still debating the utility of technology. While in 1995, 75 precent of all fortune 500 companies already were completely networked, by 1997 we estimated that about 10 percent of all instructional rooms even had Internet access. We shall learn in this book that America's public schools are less than one-third of the way to achieving their technology implementation goals. Our purpose in publishing The Last Silver Bullet? is to introduce ideas, methods, and people from the world of education technology that we believe will be of real assistance to all those who will utilize learning technology in teaching and learning, and especially to those whose responsibility it is to put in place the policies necessary to make that happen.
We intend to help develop an understanding of what education technology is, and of the role educators, business, policymakers, and the public can play in its creative, responsible development. Education technology is - right now - at that point in its rapid evolution where it still can be designed and directed for the good of children. Information and communications technology properly employed by talented educators has the potential to help restore rigor to children's learning.