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Dutch to try 'iPad schools' to advance education

updated 04:40 pm EDT, Fri March 23, 2012

Netherlands trials iPad as sole school method

The Netherlands is trying a major experiment where the iPad wouldn't just play a role in education but would be the centerpiece. The Education for a New Era effort would see three to five schools change from the traditional approach and use the iPad as a primary learning tool. While the exact method would wait until a formal proposal, it would encourage Dutch children to learn "21st century skills."

Both new and existing educational apps would be part of the overall strategy. Among those making the proposal would include "pollster" Maurice de Hond, Amsterdam city alderman Lodewijk Asscher, and education councilwoman Mariette van Leeuwen,

Tests among the first schools would start in August 2013. It might expand if there was more "enthusiasm" for the results.

Dutch plans would possibly put the late Steve Jobs' hopes of revolutionizing education to the test. He's known to have wanted an all-digital classroom where students could interact during lessons, not just watch, and get immediate feedback on any work. The iBooks 2 and iTunes U apps are some of the first steps towards this, but they haven't been tested in a wide-scale program.

In the US, a number of obstacles exist to having a truly one-for-one iPad adoption program. Having to pass state curriculum requirements is considered one of the largest and hasn't yet been met. At $399 minimum, iPads are also considered impractical for many American schools already struggling for funding, even after iPad leasing programs. [via and MacRumors]

by MacNN Staff



  1. SwissMac

    Joined: Dec 1969


    If anyone can, the Dutch can..

    The Dutch have one of the most effective education systems around, this is something to watch.

  1. Peter Bonte

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Best education systems

    The Dutch system is very good compared to the US but a lot of the Dutch parents send there children to neighboring schools in Flanders because they are better (top of the world for nationwide free schooling). A school in Blankenberge (Flanders) is already stepping over to iPads for the next season, 800 students need to have an iPad they can buy individually or rent from the school.

    - I do have my questions with this move but iBooks Author is easy enough to use so educators can make there own lessens and exames.

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