Uma iniciativa muito interessante, cujo objetivo é promover o ensino com materiais livres.


"Math hasn't changed since Isaac Newton," declares Scott McNealy. So why, he asks, is California paying some $400 million annually to "update" grade-school textbooks?

That's just one of the practices questioned by the Sun Microsystems (nasdaq: SUNW - news - people ) chairman. And one of the problems he believes can be solved.

McNealy, who handed Sun's chief executive reins to Jonathan Schwartz earlier this year, is now applying his know-how to steer the Global Education and Learning Community (GELC). (...)

McNealy's vision is worldwide access to a free Web site for kindergarten-to-12th graders (K-12). Beyond a mere Google (nasdaq: GOOG - news - people ) search, the open-source site would allow content creators to donate their own material. Think of online encyclopedia Wikipedia -- but with dependable standards. (...)

Likewise, says McNealy, the GELC plan would allow K-12 classrooms to instantly access the same approved online textbooks--instead of the expensive products hawked by "a great salesperson talking to the PTA."

And his free-market background has also shaped McNealy's vision: Far from a mere sidewalk charity, the GELC will also amass funding to enable professors to create textbooks specifically for the Web site.

Nelson Corrêa de Toledo Ferraz

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