Ten Millennium Predictions

November 01, 1999 3 min read
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Students are going to be 10 times as diverse as the school faculty in the 21st century. There will be more Hispanic students than black students for the first time in our nation’s history. In fact, there are 215 nations in the world, and every one of them has someone living in the United States.”

Harold Hodgkinson,
Center for Demographic Policy,
Institute for Educational Leadership,
Washington, D.C

“Al Gore beats George W. Bush in the 2000 presidential election. The Democrats take the House, and the Republicans hold the Senate. During the next administration, there will be no voucher legislation passed at the federal level.”

John Jennings,
Center on Education Policy,
Washington, D.C.

In 2009, “students of all ages typically have a computer of their own. . . . Intelligent courseware has emerged as a common means of learning. Recent controversial studies have shown that students can learn basic skills such as reading and math just as readily as with human teachers. . . . The traditional mode of a human teacher instructing a group of children is still prevalent, but schools are increasingly relying on software approaches, leaving human teachers to attend primarily to issues of motivation, psychological well-being, and socialization.”

Ray Kurzwell,
Author and Futurist,
from The Age of Spiritual Machines:
When Computers Exceed Human Intelligence (Viking)

“Despite the opposition of those with power and money, there will be greatly expanded public school choice in the coming years. There are now about 1,600 charter schools. By 2005, there will be as many as 5,000.”

Joe Nathan,
Center for School Change,
Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs,

“The future of teaching looks bright. . . .Peter Drucker argues that over the long-term, teachers will be better-compensated as they become more productive, just as other workers have. He predicts that in the future, teaching will be a higher-value, better-paid profession, thanks to technology, and I agree.”

Bill Gates,
Microsoft founder,
from The Road Ahead (Viking Penguin)

In the 2007-08 school year, the average salary for public school teachers will climb to $38,522-3 percent more than the average in 1996-97.

U.S. Department of Education

“By the year 2025, three-quarters of the state affiliates of the American Federation of Teachers and the National Education Association will have merged. Leaders of the two unions will interpret this as a ‘mandate’ to go ahead and merge at the national level.”

Julia Koppich,
United Mind Workers:
Unions and Teaching in the Knowledge Society (Jossey-Bass Publishers)

“Kids are torn in many directions today, and the popular culture is very powerful and deeply anti-intellectual. I don’t think that schools are irrelevant; if anything, I think that their saving power is needed more than ever. Their relevance, I suspect, will depend on their capacity to be different from the popular culture, not to imitate it.”

Diane Ravitch,
Education historian,
New York University and
the Brookings Institution in Washington, D.C.

The five states that will see the largest increase in public school enrollment between 1999 and 2009 are: Nevada, Idaho, Arizona, Hawaii, New Mexico.

U.S. Department of Education

“When I am 30, I’ll have a computer that has long arms that can clean the house and cook meals. And another computer that has a little slot that money comes out of to pay for groceries and stuff.”

6th grade girl,
to her teacher,
from Visions of Technology (Simon and Schuster),
edited by Richard Rhodes.

Predictions compiled by Karen L. Abercrombie and Drew Lindsay.

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