Schwarzenegger: Digital textbooks can save money, improve learning

"Today, our kids get their information from the internet, downloaded onto their iPods, and in Twitter feeds to their cell phones. A world of up-to-date information fits easily into their pockets and onto their computer screens," writes California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger in an op-ed piece for the San Jose Mercury News — "so why are California’s public school students still forced to lug around antiquated, heavy, expensive textbooks?" Schwarzenegger outlines why he has proposed that California schools move to digital textbooks and explore open curriculum resources–steps he says can save the state millions of dollars in education costs (see story "California is home to software giants, bioscience research pioneers, and first-class university systems known around the world. But our students still learn from instructional materials in formats made possible by Gutenberg’s printing press," he writes. "It’s nonsensical–and expensive–to look to traditional hard-bound books when information today is so readily available in electronic form. Especially now, when our school districts are strapped for cash and our state budget deficit is forcing further cuts to classrooms, we must do everything we can to untie educators’ hands and free up dollars so that schools can do more with fewer resources."

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