Benjamin Franklin on open source:
“As we enjoy great advantages from the inventions of others, we should be glad of an opportunity to serve others by any invention of ours; and this we should do freely and generously.”
Gov. Schwarzenegger Launches First-in-Nation Initiative to Develop Free Digital Textbooks for High School Students
Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger today launched an initiative to make California the first state in the nation to offer schools free, open-source digital textbooks for high school students. The Governor directed his Secretary of Education Glen Thomas to ensure these resources are available for use in high school math and science classes by fall 2009, a critical first step in helping ensure digital textbooks are widely available to all California students.
“As California’s budget crisis continues we must find such innovative ways to save money and improve services,” said Governor Schwarzenegger. “California was built on innovation and I’m proud of our state’s continued leadership in developing education technology. This first-in-the-nation initiative will reduce education costs, help encourage collaboration among school districts and help ensure every California student has access to a world-class education.”
At the Governor’s request, Secretary Thomas will work with State Superintendent of Public Instruction Jack O’Connell and State Board of Education President Ted Mitchell to develop a state approved list of standards-aligned, open-source digital textbooks for high school math and science. This list will be compiled after content developers across the country are asked to and have submitted digital material for review.
“Under Governor Schwarzenegger’s leadership, California’s classrooms will have access to a wider range of online teaching materials that best serve the unique needs of our students, parents, teachers and schools,” Secretary Thomas said. “I look forward to working with Superintendent O’Connell and President Mitchell to make these free digital resources available to California high schools for the coming school year.”
The February 2009 issue of Journal of Open and Distance Learning focuses on Open Educational Resources (OER). This special issue has been guest edited by Susan D’Antoni, who is responsible for the UNESCO OER Community. In keeping with the theme, publisher Routledge has made this issue of the journal open access and freely available (http://www.tandf.co.uk/journals/titles/02680513.asp).
In the past few months, several community colleges across the U.S. have launched webpages to promote open educational resources. Take a look:
To keep track of this growing list of institutional support for open educational resources, visit the Community College Consortium for Open Educational Resources.