Teacher Lee Briggs on technology in today's classroom. Brought to you by Weekly Reader.

My Password Wish

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My students have to juggle a lot of passwords. They have a password for logging onto the computer, another for their accelerated reader program, another for their online math program, another for a math help website, another for Moodle, and yet another for their typing website.

On a home computer, your browser would either save all of these to a cookie file, or save them in an automatic form feature, so you are spared the hassle of having to remember all those different passwords.

For schools, it is a million times more complicated, which is ironic because you would think educational websites geared for children would be made simpler. Every educational website out there has some sort of login for the students and the teacher. Every time I start a new program, I have to enter all my students and all my students have to learn another username and another randomly generated password. Nearly every site assumes that they have email and understand the jargon of the web. My students are like custodians, carrying around a massive ring of keys to a hundred different doors. Getting started on each site is time-consuming.

Here is what I want, Internet: I want an Open standard for education similar to Open ID, the open-source authentication system used by lots of people on the Internet. Can my kids have just one password, please? Just one, that they can enter to every educational website and gain access?

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