Thursday, September 13, 2007

eBooks in Schools

The Stamford Advocate has a great piece about eBooks in schools; specifically about a test program using Sony eBooks at the Bi-Cultural Day School.

Instead of lugging a huge back pack of books these students have one small book loaded with all of the material they need. Sony provided the school with 25 readers. And Pat Seldin, director of technology at the school, says that the school plans to download books for the readers to fit certain grades' curriculums.

Bi-Cultural Day School Headmaster Gerald Kirshenbaum said e-book readers may find a place in the classroom as they appeal to a generation growing up with technology. "We're pushing books, and sometimes we don't always get takers," he said. "This is an exciting, imaginative and enticing piece of equipment that will get to our goal of increasing their love of literature."

This piece makes me very happy! And not just because I sell eBooks. But also as a concerned parent. I watched my kids haul around a bulging backpack. Thier school had taken all the lockers out; evidently as a way to fight drugs. I do wonder about that particular piece of logic, but never mind. The point is that it made my back ache just to see them struggling with that huge, heavy load! Admitedly rolling cases allieviate that problem, but they are cumbersome and inconvenient.

Add this hassle to that the cost of text books and eBooks in the class room look like a natural. Presumably eBook text books will be cheaper than printed books which would be a great benefit!

Not so quick! Text book publishers, professors and college bookstores all have a large vested interest in maintaining the status quo. I suspect that only consumer pressure will ultimately make them grudgingly change over.

Anyone want to start a consumer advocate group?

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