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President proposes ARPA-ED

February 9, 2011

Last Friday, the Obama Administration proposed an Advanced Research Projects Agency-Education (ARPA-ED). The name is deliberately based on DARPA, the agency that funded what became the Internet. This proposal is an outgrowth of the National Educational Technology Plan, a five-year action plan to improve student learning and boost adoption of effective practices.

Among other duties, ARPA-ED would:

  • Invest in the development of new education technologies and digital learning materials.
  • Identify and transition the best and most relevant R&D with possible applications in education from other federal agencies.

The cost ARPA-ED and other details won’t be available until the President’s 2012 budget request goes to the Congress next week. Many legislators are likely to object to the expansion of government through the creation of a new agency.

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