This is the second time Alison McDowell has been a guest on Social Impact Podcast. Alison is an expert researcher with a blog called Wrench In The Gears. The last time she was on the show we talked about Education and the Biosecurity State in 2021. She and I began our advocacy in public education by exposing the privatization agenda and the push for experimental technologies. School choice is a major platform being pushed in the 88th Texas Legislature. The quest to shift public dollars into private hands through vouchers and school choice dollars following the child has been in the works for decades.
Alison says there are a lot of discussions around school choice, what the future of school looks like, and tracking children in terms of behavior by shifting to competency or mastery-based learning with data privacy implications. She believes the conversation that is missing is the future economy and the push towards recreating children as “digital citizens” as part of a global workforce mediated by artificial intelligence (AI) based on all the little data points that are being collected on our kids in the classroom on what they know, how they think and what kind of “team” members they are.
She calls it the Collective Intelligence Experiment. All of this intelligence whether cognitive or emotional is being hoovered up to create a simulation of us – a digital twin – and then to make predictions about us as future citizens, workers, and human capital. Global investors are making bets on human capital extracted from our children.
The future of work is a remote, task rabbit economy of gig work collecting competency badges with metadata attached. The instability relies on the captive market of public school children to feed this economy. Those pushing school choice are no different than the progressive nonprofits pushing out-of-seat-time learning in urban settings. Polarization of both sides feeds the voucher agenda, tokenized economy and future of work.
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