Digital equity is easier to define than it is to solve. It’s about making sure students have equal access to technology like devices, software and the internet, and that they have trained educators to help them navigate those tools.
That can be a heavy lift when you consider all the types of students on the playing field – those from low-income districts or rural communities, kids with physical or learning challenges, and girls or minority students who are not getting the same opportunities and support that would set them up for careers in tech fields.
“A lack of digital access is a lack of access to education period,” said Terry Godwaldt, director of programming at The Center for Global Education in Canada.
Read these five articles to get a full picture of how digital equity affects living and learning and what leaders are doing to close the gap.
When it comes to making sure all students have connectivity outside of school hours, you don't have to go it alone. Learn how Rowan-Salisbury schools in North Carolina partnered with stakeholders in the community to narrow the digital divide.
Finding devices and solving connectivity issues is the first challenge of digital equity. Teaching educators and the larger community to use this technology meaningfully is a much more nuanced challenge.
It’s time to ensure that girls are seeing, hearing from and being mentored by people who look like them working in the fields they want to pursue. And computer science coach Kimberly Lane thinks educators should be on the leading edge of making that happen.
As students return full time to classrooms across the country, many of them for the first time in 18 months, Janice Mak urges school and district leaders to build on the digital equity gains that have allowed so many families access to home connectivity.
As more educators create their own education materials, it's important they make sure digital resources are accessible to all students. Read five ways simple ways to ensure multimedia content works for everyone.
Diana Fingal is director of digital content for ISTE.