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Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Technology Is Key for Boosting Classroom Equity | EdTech Magazine: Focus on Higher Education

Integration of digital tools can help give students an equal playing field, according to a new report, reports Eli Zimmerman, budding journalist with experience reporting across various fields.  

Photo: CleoFilter/Getty Images

As the growth in personalized learning initiatives has emphasized, students will exhibit differing aptitudes for subjects depending on their strengths.

However, issues with classroom equity have left some students unable to perform, not because they are having trouble grasping the material but because of issues related to geography, race, gender, ethnicity, language or economics.

In response, America’s Promise Alliance, the Aspen Institute’s Education and Society Program and the Council of Chief State School Officers have issued a report to help school districts address these equity issues.

“We recognize the journey toward educational equity is a long and arduous one, but it is an important and necessary journey that will define the course of our nation,” the report’s authors conclude. “We all recognize we can do more, and these promising practices show we are on the right path to ensure a brighter future for our nation’s students.”

Innovations in technology may be the key in establishing an equal playing field for students struggling to catch up to their peers. 

Accessibility Through Online Learning Programs  
A prominent distinction among students is where they live, more specifically the difference between urban and rural homes. 

Those living farther away from their school district may not be able to access the same resources or may be more likely to miss days of school because of their living situations, with states like North Carolina and Maine seeing a significant rise in absenteeism in rural students.

Establishing an online network where students can access classroom materials and school resources can be a great way to boost equity. Some districts have already begun to create these types of networks.

The Utah Education Network, in collaboration with the Utah State Board of Education, has compiled a site housing research databases, lesson plans and platforms for distance learning, according to the report.

Source: EdTech Magazine: Focus on Higher Education