What is equitable digital access?
It is when all students, in any classroom, have the same opportunities to access and use technology and digital resources despite disabilities and family income.
While technology exposure in the classroom has increased over the years, this is drastically different from how students have access to technology at home and outside of the classroom. Some of the most common reasons are that it is too expensive for families, families did not see a need for it, and families lacked capabilities for computers and the Internet.
How To Fix the Problem
1. Seek first to understand. Do a survey at the beginning of the year to determine the technology capabilities students have at home.
2. Try it out! Before assigning things to students, make sure to test it out yourself to ensure that it is user-friendly.
3. Create a tech equity vision with your students. Give students accountability and ownership of the technology they use.
4. Reconsider your homework policies. Be consistent with students, but don't punish a student for lack of technology at home.
"How do I ensure equitable digital access in my classroom?"
This is a question that many teachers have. It can be difficult to organize schedules for fair usage of technology and making sure that technology is accessible by all students including those with disabilities or from poorer socio-economic statuses. However, although difficult, it is important for students to have equitable access to digital devices at school in order to enhance their learning and to prepare them for the real-world.
- Five Equity Questions Every Parent Must Ask During Back-to-School Night https://news.utexas.edu/2016/08/15/five-equity-questions-every-parent-must-ask/
- How Access to Technology Can Create Equity in Schools https://digitalpromise.org/2019/04/29/equity-in-schools-access-technology/
- 10 Strategies Promoting Digital Access and Equity https://www.gettingsmart.com/2017/03/10-strategies-promoting-digital-access-and-equity/