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Expanding the Known: Museums and Educational Reform


Opportunity for Museums[2] in light of Elementary and Secondary School Reform in the United States.

 Elaine Heumann Gurian

22 February 2013


This is a paper about the opportunities for museums to deliver educational services that are more substantial and more central than is currently the norm.  Museums can become a more central partner with the education system of our country if (and it is a big if) there is a proliferation of the kind of school reform we are seeing on a small scale in many places in the United States.  And if (and this is a bigger if) the museum sector (and individual museums within in it) decide to retool by downsizing the current, and I think superficial, school visitation program and substituting offerings that are more substantial.

In order to understand the opportunities that might be on the horizon for the museum sector, I spend considerable time in this paper, forecasting (maybe fantasizing) what I believe K-12 education might look like in the not-too distant-future. 

I end this paper with a speculation about what I see more generally as the emerging future of all services as they move from being place dependent to be available 24/7 from multiple sources.