Online Learning

During the debate over HF 204, an act relating to open enrollment of students in online learning programs [virtual academies], on the House floor, Representative Staed tweeted:

Apparently he hasn’t heard that the future of teaching and learning is online.

Question: at what point of ed tech integration is there essentially no real difference between attending a brick and mortar school and a virtual academy? When all students are working through individualized computer-based, 21st century versions of WHIMP instead of participating in teacher-led, whole-group instruction? When a student in Iowa is more likely to be discussing a book with a student in Australia than with any of the other human beings sharing a physical space with him, because, 21st century?

I am completely aware that I am a broken record on the subject, but why can’t we aim for Montessori for all (or at least for all who want it) instead? Where kids are actually interacting with real, physical objects, and the human beings sharing space with them, rather than interacting with screens all day?