Teaching and Learning in a Net-Centric World

Canadian Government Folds on Education (again)

I was shocked last week to read a story in Globe and Mail that they were allowing Inukshuk Wireless (a telephone company owned by Rogers and Bell) to discontinue its funding of educational multi-media projects.

By way of background in 2000 the federal government offered bandwidth that was being reserved for educational use, to the private sector. But one of the conditions was that the winner had to propose a funding arrangement to return value to the education system. This bandwidth had been allocated to education back in the days when everyone thought that educational TV would be a big deal. In Manitoba and Sask, they were using the bandwidth, so they were not made to give up the bandwidth, nor reap any compensatory services.

So Inukshuk won the bid, began issuing calls for proposals to develop educational media and developed a system to administer this funding. The 2009 call offered $2.4 million for projects, as per the terms of the agreement. Naturally, Inukshuk would rather not have to cover this expense, so I assume, went whining to the federal government. Our Conservative government, not wanting to get involved in business nor displease their corporate backers, allowed them to cease funding the programming. This was done without consultation nor notification, beyond that the fund was no longer operational.

I realize that Canada is plagued with a system that does not allow for national learning programs, but why on earth – except for ideological bias, would a government allow a company to renege on a contractual agreement, that has brought needed investment to Canadian education?

I hope other Canadians  will join me in writing to Industry Minster Tony Clement, asking him who he is governing on behalf of and to demand that this contract be fulfilled as negotiated.

Similar posts
  • More on Distance Education Journal Ra... Both academics and administrators love to argue about the value (impact) of their academic work.  The old adage of “Publish or Perish” still has currency. Despite the many distribution opportunities besides and beyond publishing in scholarly journals, the bean counters (myself included) love citation indexes. The basic idea is that the more your work is [...]
  • Teaching at Jiangnan University, Wuxi... My 4 week trip to China is a week done, and I thought I would document the trip to date (you know us old guys have trouble remembering the details!). Four years I received a request to host and sponsor a PhD student from Bejing Normal School. Zhijun Wang soon worked her way into our [...]
  • What the FOLC is new in this article? Sorry, but I couldn’t resist spoofing, in the post title,  the unfortunate sound of the acronym for the “new” model proposed in this article. Now,  I’ve got it out of the way and can only suggest that if this “divergent fork of the Community of Inquiry model” is to survive, it needs a new English [...]
  • Is Google Scholar a Filter Bubble? A major  goal of net-based  mass media is to customize the feed that is delivered to each viewer received a unique screen that matches their interest and more importantly their likelihood of purchasing some product or viewing some paid for message.  This phenomenon was labeled as “filter bubble” by author Eli Pariser – meaning that certain results [...]
  • Quality in Online Learning Presentati... I was asked to do a video conferencing talk to a meeting of three Mexican Universities yesterday. They are attempting to come up with a common set of criteria to define and measure the quality of their online courses. Perhaps I was not the best person to ask, as I have very mixed feelings about [...]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Subscribe to Virtual Canuck via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 332 other subscribers

My posts by Category

My Blog Archives


  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • SlideShare
  • RSS Feed for Posts
  • Email

Follow me on Twitter