Building games as a motivation for academic excellence
The Dayton Technology Design High School will enroll about 100 students, with about 80 in the “virtual game” track, requiring a three-year commitment and culminating in the completion, marketing and possibly sale of a student-created educational video game...
...The technology design school is for 16- to 22-year-olds willing to make a three-year commitment. During 70-minute periods, course work will cover math, science, social studies and English. In virtual game classes, students will work in groups of no more than 12 on a schoolwide project, creating an educational video game. The goal is to teach the kids work force, academic, life and “new economy” skills. Student work will focus on developing the technical framework of the game, managing the process and marketing the end product.
In my opinion, that's great. Assuming that they're selecting for students that are already engaged with games as an entertainment medium, the team structure and intensity of game development should be quite a challenging, yet exciting course. I hope that they will also be aiming to develop art and music (audio production?) skills for those students that are so inclined... I expect that they already have programming courses planned.
Also, only Dayton superintendents can make remarks like this and get away with it:
“When we first started talking about the video game, people laughed at us,” Superintendent Percy Mack said. “But they laughed at the Wright brothers, too.”