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Minnesota High School Teachers Write Their Own Text Books

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BridgeTheGap Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-18-11 08:32 AM
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Minnesota High School Teachers Write Their Own Text Books

Ask any college student and theyll tell you that course textbooks are a racket. But pose the same question to a middle- or high-school student and theyll shrug with an air of hormonally augmented indifference. High schoolers dont typically need to purchase their textooks, but borrow them from the school library or individual department. Just as theres no such thing as a free lunch, theres no such thing as a free textbook. The school district picks up the tab instead.

The high school textbook industry is controlled by a few very powerful publishers that sell one-size-fits-all books at a premium price to schools. Some basic texts can cost as much as $65 a piece, even when bought in high volume. A school in Blaine, Minn., for example, budgeted $200,000 for a new set of math books that would need to serve the department for 10 years. Why spend that much money when the teachers can write the textbooks themselves?

That was the bright idea of math teacher Michael Engelhaupt of Blaine High School, who led a team that wrote, organized, produced, and distributed a new textbook for the Anoka-Hennepin school district. Overall, reports the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Engelhaupt and his colleagues saved the district $175,000. You do the math.

Read more: http://www.utne.com/Mind-Body/Minnesota-High-School-Teachers-Write-Their-Own-Textbooks.aspx#ixzz1e40C07XT
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exboyfil Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-18-11 09:14 AM
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1. Actually there is no reason that
the DOE cannot create open source textbooks. Combine with inexpensive publishing and save lots of dollars. The DOE should insist on it at the college level as well to qualify for student loans. Kids can pay up to $1500/yr. for textbooks for Freshman and Sophomore subjects that really don't change much.
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Goblinmonger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-18-11 02:02 PM
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2. Some problems as an English teacher
in that you have copyright issues. I teach Brit Lit, and I can teach that pretty much without a textbook given that it is all online until pretty recently and you don't cover much of the recent stuff in a Brit Lit class.

I like the concept and think that is where more people need to head. Screw Texas and their monopoly on what is taught.
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