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Paperless Classrooms? New York City Mayoral Candidate Says Yes



In New York City, Christine Quinn, a current city council speaker and the projected winner of the mayoral race against incumbent Michael Bloomberg, is hoping a technological upgrade in New York City schools will bring about innovation and limitless possibilities.

Quinn proposes eliminating textbooks and instead issuing New York City students tablets. She believes this will allow teachers to share lessons and materials effortlessly with colleagues around the world. Online textbooks can be easily created and then distributed to students who can read them on their tablets at school and at home.

Since materials would be electronic, they can be updated throughout the year to be as current as possible. Interactive multimedia can also be incorporated for a full learning experience.

Quinn noted that New York City spends $100 million each year on textbooks. Instead Quinn believes this is enough money to buy every student in the New York public school system a tablet.

Going green goes far beyond utilizing clean energy, recycling paper and using it as a passive learning material, and taking energy saving measures. Going green can also look like innovation, it can look like technology, it can look like the future. Acts that on the surface do not appear to warrant the ‘green’ moniker can actually make quite a difference in the efforts to save the globe from the damage we’ve done.

Editor’s note: What do you think? Is the energetic effort of manufacturing those tablets, powering them and then taking care of their after-life (which may or may not lead to recycling), smaller than the effort of recycling paper and putting it back to work? Paper doesn’t consume energy while being read nor does it need so much energy and natural resources a tablet does when it’s manufactured.

The bottom question to you is: besides being fancier and possibly cheaper, do you think learning from energy-hungry tablets is greener than learning from good-old paper textbooks?

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  1. Is this the end of libraries in schools? A pity if it is, because libraries can be such wonderfully atmospheric places, very conducive to reading and study.


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