By Katherine Ellison
It seems an unlikely battlefront for a revolution – this two-story wooden house off a quiet side street in a small coastal town bordering Silicon Valley.
Yet this is the headquarters of the Institute for the Study of Knowledge Management in Education, or ISKME, whose wonkish name belies its upstart challenge to the multibillion-dollar textbook industry.
The 12-year-old nonprofit is a leading champion of the “Open Educational Resources” movement – a growing campaign, strongly rooted in California, to make educational materials available online and free of cost. The movement has gained increasing clout in U.S. classrooms as teachers and school districts seek up-to-date materials to meet new demands stemming from the Common Core State Standards. In one sign of its growing importance, the U.S. Department of Education last month hired its first in-house adviser to help school districts use such resources more effectively.