Superintendent Jack D. Dale calls for learning without the constraints of time

The concept of standardizing time in classrooms has not changed much since the “Carnegie unit” was created in the early part of the 20th century, according to Fairfax County Superintendent Jack D. Dale. Speaking May 6 at a meeting sponsored by the Discovery Educator Network, Dr. Dale told more than 80 administrators from Maryland, Virginia, Washington D.C., and North Carolina that in the last century educational changes were based on the “industrial model” of manufacturing a large number of high school graduates.

“The early adopters were, at first colleges, then secondary schools, Dr. Dale said. “We still count time to determine the amount of course credit to be given, or to validate the length of a school year.”

Dr. Dale suggested a new educational model “based on learning…perhaps without the constraints of time, particularly time in a brick building…perhaps available 24/7/365… perhaps one where technology can replace the routine, static portions of our current education system and where advanced thinking, and team learning becomes the purpose for the ‘public’ portion of our educational system.”

Dr. Dale handed out copies of this speech at the May 18 meeting of the Governance Committee of the Fairfax County school board:

More information about the May 6 meeting can be found at this web address:


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