British education expert Anthony Seldon has a date for the robot takeover of the classroom: 2027. He predicts robots will do the main job of transferring information and teachers will be like assistants. Intelligent robots will read students’ faces, movements and maybe even brain signals. Then they will adapt the information to each student. It’s not a popular opinion and it’s unlikely robots will ever have empathy and the ability to really connect with humans like another human can.
One thing is certain, though. A robot teacher is better than no teacher at all. In some parts of the world, there aren’t enough teachers and 9–16 per cent of children under the age of 14 don’t go to school. That problem could be partly solved by robots because they can teach anywhere and won’t get stressed, or tired, or move somewhere for an easier, higher-paid job.
I don’t want to have a robot as a teacher. Having a robot teacher has both good and bad sides․ The good points are that a robot can remember more information than a human. Robots can do their job faster than humans. And robots won’t get tired of working long. But the robot teacher also has some disadvantages. Robots cannot have emotions, they can’t feel your mood, can’t sympathize with you, can’t joke and love you. If a child does something other than a class during thelesson, the robot can never know.