A task force appointed by the federal government to study how the internet can change education for the better held its first public hearing in Washington, D.C., on Feb. 2.

The initial meeting of the Congressional Web-based Education Commission set the group's agenda and laid the groundwork for a 10-month study of the issues--and criticisms--surrounding the use of online content and learning strategies to improve K-12 and higher education.

The commission is made up of senators, congress members, educators, and business leaders, most notably Sen. Bob Kerry, D-Neb.; Sen. Jeff...

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