Digital Divide Still Growing

The push for all digital classrooms and 24/7 learning means that students need reliable, high-speed internet connections at home and school. There are several initiatives to bring all schools online in the United States, but according to a new analysis from The Atlantic, that may not happen even in the next five years. Moreover, none of the programs address students’ home access or the need to develop students’ internet skills. As a result, this connection disparity and lack of familiarity with navigating digital resources may be exacerbating the digital divide.

“But as technology morphs from being a luxury to being a necessity, the chasm between the performance of low-income students and their more affluent peers is coming under even greater scrutiny. Advocates say the tech movement is further exacerbating the already-large achievement gap; in education circles, this phenomenon is dubbed the ‘connectivity gap’ or the ‘digital divide.’ Discrepancies exist among schools and across districts, but they also spread to individual students, many of whom live in homes without sufficient connectivity.”

Read “When Students Can’t Go Online,” by Terrance F. Ross, from The Atlantic.

For more on digital learning, come to the 2015 CIC from the PreK-12 Learning Group and attend the Edtech Reality Check session.

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Digital Issues