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The AI Trilogy: The Rise of the Jed-AI in Education

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Leadership & Implementation
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Opinion Piece
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Chris Goodall

Head of Digital Education, Bourne Education Trust

This thought piece journeys through the transformative waves AI has sent through education, drawing inspiration from the Star Wars narrative. Beginning with an initial explosion of excitement and disruption, it delves into the subsequent challenges and resistances faced, mirroring the push-pull dynamics of innovation and tradition. As the narrative progresses, it contemplates the potential of AI to truly revolutionise the educational landscape.

A short time ago in a school not so far, far away…

Episodes I, II & III

I - AI a New Hope

In late November 2022 I felt a great disturbance in the force, as if millions of teachers suddenly cried out in terror. Chat GPT was launched, and it was immediately obvious that the world of education was destined to change.

AI has certainly had an impact and for months there has been an AI feeding frenzy with new developments and tools being launched daily. The main concern in education was of plagiarism and, although still an issue, balance seems to have been somewhat restored to the force in that discussion.

II – The System Strikes Back

Although not to the same extent this is reminiscent of Web2.0 where there was an initial wave of excitement and tools, that then died away as the tools, although shiny, didn’t add enough value to the learning process and became luxury bolt-ons. Teachers mainly reverted to core products.

For me we are at a similar point with AI. It is showing great impact with teacher workload and levelling the learning of the most vulnerable. However, all the talk now seems to be becoming circular in that AI will majorly disrupt things, root and branch change is needed, how to equip our young people and how to change the curriculum and assessment. But currently it's talk and little action.

I fear change won’t be as easy or as quick as we first thought. The empire is strong and won’t go down that easily! The system is very powerful, and if all we get out of this movement is reduced workload and levelling up then it will have been somewhat of failure.

I’m sorry if you find my lack of faith disturbing!

III – Return of the Jed-AI

Its funny that in some ways the current workflows of AI tools, although amazing, feel kind of clunky and dated. There is hope though. I think once tools are fully integrated, ubiquitous, and widely used in industry, then pressure will mount for a changing system.

The current one will no longer be relevant, and it will be more obvious that we are no longer preparing students adequately for future of work. 

Change will have to come. Rebellions are built on hope.

Train we must, for Jed-AI knights to become! <(-_-)>

Key Learning