The Southern Regional Education Board (SREB) has long been a bastion of sound educational policy recommendations, and they have recently come forth with some very solid guidelines on OER in the report “An Expectation of Sharing: Guidelines for Effective Policies to Respect, Protect and Increase the Use of Digital Educational Resources.”
Authored by the SCORE Working Group on Digital Content Rights, this bold and well-written report begins with the assertion that “most electronic educational resources created in the last decade by teachers and technology specialists…cannot be used in the classrooms of teachers outside the narrow groups for which they were originally developed” because no sharing licenses were used. The report then goes on to make some very specific and clear policy recommendations:
1. All digital resources developed with public funding should be licensed to share.
2. The least restrictive license possible should be used, specifically CC BY.
3. These resources should be housed in accessible digital content repositories with the relevant supporting infrastructure.
These recommendations are excellent and should be immediately adopted by federal agencies, state departments, and local districts for all publicly funded projects.
With dollars flowing into various new development projects related to RttT, Common Core, national assessments, etc., the time is now to make sure all schools can share in these resources.