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The AI Classroom Hype Is All Wrong, Some Educators Say

Many educators who have used generative artificial intelligence tools in their work have called the emerging technology a “game changer.”

Some say it’s been especially helpful in reducing the time it takes to do planning or administrative work, such as creating schedules, crafting lesson plans, and writing letters of recommendation for students. Teachers say they work an average of 57 hours a week, but less than half of that time is spent teaching.

“I think the use of AI has streamlined many aspects of teaching and has saved much prep time for teachers,” said a high school fine arts teacher in California in an open-ended response to an EdWeek Research Center survey conducted in March and April.

But amid all the encouragement to try the technology, there are plenty of educators who haven’t tried AI tools and don’t plan to start. These educators are more skeptical of the technology and don’t believe it should be used in K-12.

In open-ended responses to the EdWeek Research Center survey, educators shared their reasoning:

It could degrade critical thinking skills

— District-level administrator, Ohio

— High school foreign language teacher, New Jersey

— High school English teacher, Louisiana

— High school math teacher, Texas

— District-level administrator, Texas

— Middle school teacher, Missouri

The human touch is better

— High school math teacher, Michigan

— Middle school physical education teacher, Virginia

— High school career-technical education teacher, Missouri

— District-level administrator, Alabama

— High school social studies teacher, Montana

The K-12 system isn’t prepared

— High school foreign language teacher, Pennsylvania

— Elementary fine arts teacher, Virginia

— Elementary teacher, North Carolina

Concerns about how it affects their jobs

— High school English teacher, Minnesota

— Middle school English teacher, Massachusetts

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