How Virtual Learning Can Truly Transform Schools

Paul Peterson discusses how technological innovation can do what almost two centuries of other school “reforms” have failed to accomplish: customize American education “so that each child is taught material at a level he or she can grasp.”
Although “still an adolescent with many sharp elbows and awkward gestures,” online learning, Professor Peterson argues, has the potential to create the highly personalized learning experience that has long eluded school reformers. The result could be a “customized system of education in which families have greater choice and control over their children’s education than at any time since our schools were founded.”
A native of Montevideo, Minnesota, Paul Peterson is Henry Lee Shattuck Professor of Government at Harvard University.