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ChatGPT banned from New York City public school devices, networks 

Students work on laptops in a classroom
Associated Press/Elaine Thompson

The New York City Department of Education has banned the new artificial intelligence system ChatGPT from public school networks and devices, citing concerns about the chatbot’s ability to generate essays culled from the internet.  

ChatGPT gives educators pause because of “concerns about negative impacts on student learning” and “concerns regarding the safety and accuracy of content,” department spokesperson Jenna Lyle told Chalkbeat and multiple other outlets Thursday. 

The language processing system GPT, or Generative Pre-trained Transformer, was developed by OpenAI and is designed to provide human-like conversation through artificial intelligence.  

“The dialogue format makes it possible for ChatGPT to answer followup questions, admit its mistakes, challenge incorrect premises, and reject inappropriate requests,” the system’s bio on OpenAI reads.  

Among other tasks, ChatGPT can generate essays culled from information on the internet on command, complete with argumentative theses and near perfect grammar.

The tool has garnered both popularity and concern since its release — and the New York education department’s move to try to filter out ChatGPT use on school networks and devices comes amid worries that students could lean on the service at a detriment to their education. 

“While the tool may be able to provide quick and easy answers to questions, it does not build critical-thinking and problem-solving skills, which are essential for academic and lifelong success,” Lyle told outlets on Thursday.  

The Hill has reached out to the department for more information.

Tags Artificial Intelligence ChatGPT New York New York Department of Education
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