The primary use of modern technology is immediate and expansive access to information. While this certainly has extensive application within academics, we believe that the primary purpose of education is more than just the acquisition of information: it is learning how to properly understand, interpret, and use that information in virtuous and wise ways.
Unfortunately, modern uses of information technology flip the roles of the teacher and technology in the classroom. The technology is seen as the chief information giver within the class, while the teacher simply facilitates that flow of information. If this is education, then all students become an ‘empty vessel’ who have a vast knowledge of how to access knowledge but have no way of understanding and owning knowledge themselves.
Secondly, the benefits of technology are often countered by problems that arise from its overuse. The educational value of these devices is often outstripped by the temptation of social media, videos, and gaming – right in the student’s pocket. In addition to these distractions, these personal devices often enable unkind and cruel behavior in a realm beyond the reach and guidance of adults. These reasons underlie our strict cell phone and technology policy in our schools. If our children’s experience of the world is constantly filtered through technology, they never receive the benefit of genuine human interaction. This type of healthy human connection is the foundation of their development into young men and women of character and virtue.