Last week’s News reported that the school technology chief is now Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum, Instruction and Technology. During her tenure, the school installed a cart system in which portable Wi-Fi transmitters were turned on only when laptops were used and subsequently “upgraded” to permanent access points and Chromebooks that flood the schools with radiation commensurate with or in excess of levels close to cell towers, contraindicated by a mid-90’s California Public Utilities Commission recommendation.
In April, Israel’s third largest city and high-tech center, Haifa, disconnected Wi-Fi in K-12. In March, a bill was introduced in Argentina’s Congress that would ban Wi-Fi in major public places, including schools. In February, the Vienna Medical Association recommended using hard-wiring instead of Wi-Fi and restricting cell phone use.
In May, the National Toxicology Program released initial data from its $25 million cell phone study confirming that 1/15 rats irradiated 9 hours a day for 28 days developed cancer or pre-cancer, and the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences held a seminar on electrohypersensitivity. 20 teachers in the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) have developed electrohypersensitivity from the industrial strength Wi-Fi on the premises and now require accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act so they can continue to teach, having been injured by the school. The Onteora School District’s (Ulster County, NY) PTA wrote the school board asking that Wi-Fi be removed.
It is a conflict of interest for the person in charge of technology to be in charge of curriculum; both the school board and the parents, perhaps unwittingly, have allowed the technology tail to wag the education dog.
Have any of the stakeholders asked the $64,000 question: what is the so-called educational benefit of this technology?
The West Point Economics Department published a study, “The Impact of Computer Usage on Academic Performance: Evidence from a Randomized Trial at the United States Military Academy”, in May in MIT’s School Effectiveness and Inequality Initiative that showed significantly reduced test performance by students who used laptops and tablets.
West Point’s is only the latest study confirming the technology reduces students’ ability to retain information and learn. Absent action by the school board and parents to cease spending taxpayer dollars on the Assistant Superintendent’s $130K salary and technology that microwaves the student body (and teachers) with a program that interferes with learning, I refer students to Pink Floyd’s “Another Brick in the Wall”.
Citations and Resources for Parents:
“Letting Children Use Laptops in Class Causes Test Scores to Drop”
Carter SP, Greenberg K, Walker M. The Impact of Computer Useage on Academic Performance: Evidence from a Randomized Trial at the United States Military Academy. MIT School Effectiveness and Inequality Initiative. May 2016.
Faria S, Weston T, Cepeda N. Computers Laptop multitasking hinders classroom learning for both users and nearby peers. Computers and Education. 2013:3: 62: 24-31.
Mueller PA, Oppenheimer DM. The Pen Is Mightier Than the Keyboard Advantages of Longhand Over Laptop Note Taking. Psychological Science. 2014: 25; 6: 1159-1168.
Carr, Nicholas. The Shallows: What the Internet is Doing to Our Brains: 2011: W.W. Norton and Company.
“Spider Wire” Hard-Wiring Solution for iPads and Chromebooks:
This composite clip of some news coverage of the Wi-Fi problem: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KUxlJ79AyZU
If you look specifically at time stamps 3.07-5.00 mins you see a person performing the analysis I suggested doing in the Open Letter to PEA http://wirelessrighttoknow.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/Exeter-WiFi.pdf his measurements up close to a cell tower (contraindicated by the California Public Utilities Commission, the EU and the literature) are the same as what he was getting in a classroom without being near the devices- with just the Wi-Fi transmitter on; more damning, the readings near cell towers were lower than the emissions by the wireless devices- laptops etc. that the kids are using.
The math in a nutshell: literature suggested being 1,500 feet from a cell tower to avoid at a minimum a statistically significant number of people displaying symptoms of sensitization. Being at the base of a tall cell tower (something people understood was a bad ideas) is equivalent to background radiation in Wi-Fi’ed classroom- already in levels of extreme concern (Building Biology Institute standards). By iPads and laptops it is even higher than that.
The woman who wrote the “Cupertino we have a problem” article http://www.greenmedinfo.com/blog/cupertino-we-have-problem-wifi-kids-1 measured the radiation coming off the iPad- but didn’t compare it to a cell tower to get the full comparison like the person in the above video did- but you get the point of how much more radiation is around the device than in the background of the room.
Note, Lennart Hardell, the world’s expert on health effects of wireless devices (work was basis for an Italian court linking cell and cordless phones with brain tumors) stipulates that an iPad should be banned in human environments if the goal is health. See attached slide- including fact that spikes emit up to 100,000 times too much radiation.
A USEFUL 2-SIDED INDEX CARD THAT DESCRIBES THE PROBLEM WELL:
* Argentina has a bill in its lower house- to ban wi-fi in public (schools, hospitals, cultural areas): “Argentina busca una ley nacional contra la contaminacion electromagnetica” El Nuevo Cronista, 3/28/16.
* Israel’s mayor just ordered Wi-Fi disconnected in ALL of the schools: Haifa municipality disconnects Wi-Fi: בעיר בגניילדיםובתיהספר Wi-Fi – אתמכשיריה- עירייתחיפהמנתקת, 4/18/16.
* The PTA in the Onteora school district asked the school board to yank the WI-Fi: http://safetechforschoolsmaryland.blogspot.com/2016/04/new-york-pta-calls-for-wi-fi-to-be.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+SafeTechForSchoolsMaryland+%28Safe+Tech+for+Schools+Maryland%29
* The Vienna Medical Association announced new wireless guidelines at the end of 2015: they say used wired internet connections instead of Wi-Fi, suggest removing apps from phones and give tips for reducing exposure from phones:
“10 Medizinische Handy-Regeln”: 11/12/15:
US Government acknowledged in May 2016 that 1/15 rats exposed to cell phones 9 hours a day for 28 days developed cancer or pre-cancer:
Wyde M, Cesta M, Blystone C, Elmore S, Foster P, Hooth M, Kissling G, Malarkey D, Sills R, Stout M, Walker N, Witt K, Wolfe M, Bucher J. Report of Partial Findings from the National Toxicology Program Carcinogenesis Studies of Cell Phone Radiofrequency Radiation in Hsd: Sprague Dawley rats (Whole Body Exposure): http://biorxiv.org/content/early/2016/05/26/055699.full.pdf+html
NIEHS May 9th Seminar on Electrosensitivity: http://www.niehs.nih.gov/news/newsletter/2016/6/science-highlights/environmental_medicine/index.htm
Wireless Right to Know Briefing, Massachusetts State House, with Frank Clegg: https://vimeo.com/134411701 The American Academy of Environmental Medicine (AAEM) “Recommendations Regarding Electromagnetic and Radiofrequency Exposure”: 7/12/12: https://www.aaemonline.org/pdf/AAEMEMFmedicalconditions.pdf; The American Academy of Environmental Medicine (AAEM) Position Paper, “Electromagnetic and Radiofrequency Fields Effect on Human Health”: 4/12/12: https://aaemonline.org/pdf/emfpositionstatement.pdf. Havas M. Our love affair with wireless technologies is making us sick. New York State Union of Teachers (NYSUT), December 9, 2014: http://scholar.aci.info/view/14f8fe83eab00130010/1501ef5a51d000115d8
Also- look at http://wifiinschools.com/ (click on experts- and look at open letters and also LAUSD testimony, in which a Harvard pediatric neurologist said that WI-Fi should esp. be avoided by kids with learning disabilities).
A Finnish scientist says we will be looking at an epidemic of brain damage for kids who have been sitting in this from cradle onwards.
This is consistent with literature showing problems at levels below Wi-Fi: http://www.bioinitiative.org/report/wp-content/uploads/pdfs/BioInitiativeReport-RF-Color-Charts.pdf and proteins that are precursors to Alzheimer’s in rats from Wi-Fi: http://wirelessrighttoknow.com/wi-fi-exposure-may-increase-risk-of-neurodegenerative-disease/ as well as studies showing that Wi-FI and cell phone frequencies confuse rats so they are unable to find their way out of a water maze they were previously trained to exit. Other studies show dysfunctional offspring in rats exposed to cellphones during gestation and death of brain neurons from rats exposed to cell phones.