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Framing the Issue of the Digital Divide in Education

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Complexity of Problems and Solutions

Nuanced Issues and Approaches

Millions of students cannot do their homework as they don't have access to home broadband internet.  A few years back, it seemed that devices were a primary issue.  Devices are still an issue in many districts, but the a shift to 1 to 1 devices in school district is gaining momentum.   Some students might have a computer issued to them but still lack home access.  Some students (especially in rural areas) don't have any possibility of access.  Here is an interesting two interesting statistics that speak to the problem of the homework gap:

  • As many as 7 in 10 teachers assign homework that requires access to broadband, but one in three households do not subscribe to broadband service

  • More than half of principals nationwide now cite digital equity as a major challenge in their schools.
The video below is a panel discussion that features Jessica Rosenworcel, a member of the FCC.  The discussion helps outline both the complexity of the problem and the complexity of the solution.  In reality, there are several problems operating all at once which require different solutions.  

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