Digital Equity: An Imaginary Problem?

Over at EdSurge, Beth Holland makes some great points. I have to admit I didn't get past the quote:
Time and again, researchers have illustrated the negative impacts of the digital divide, particularly on the students with the greatest need: those from lower-income, rural, and racial minority communities as well as those with learning differences. (source)
I'm not sure if she's writing that paragraph or if she's quoting the new report from New America. Beth points out:
A critical condition for an equitable education, digital equity spans a broader context than just access to sufficient devices and high-speed internet. 
As a framework, it calls on educators and leaders to ensure that all students have access to and ownership of the tools that best support them as learners; opportunities to develop the skills and competencies required to best take advantage of these digital resources; and a deep understanding of not simply using these tools—but using them to engage with learning experiences that are targeted, authentic, relevant, socially connected, and growth-oriented.
She's pushing for more than technology infrastructure being the priority, but also, how to engage with "learning experiences that are:"
  • targeted
  • authentic
  • relevant
  • socially connected
  • growth-oriented
So how do you do that? I think the Magic Formula I shared in yesterday's blog entry goes a long way towards that. If you don't believe me, check out the authors and evidence-based strategies I mention. You could also visit these websites that provide a handy list of online sources of research about what works. 

Beth offers some recommendations, but I can't help and be a little pessimistic about undertaking so many changes in a short time. We end up with another checklist of things to do. The problem is, no one seems to follow these checklists with fidelity.

Fidelity. We need more of that, a willingness to follow successful checklists with the ferocity NCLB was, but with more kindness. Maybe digital equity is simply "equity."

Everything posted on Miguel Guhlin's blogs/wikis are his personal opinion and do not necessarily represent the views of his employer(s) or its clients. Read Full Disclosure


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