Educational Tech, Equity and Social Justice
I'm interested in discussions regarding the collision that occurs when Educational Technology meets Equity and Social Justice:
* How is "digital equity" usually defined? Who gets to define it?
* How are educational technologies used to address educational and social inequities?
* How do educational technologies contribute to these inequities?
* How can teachers, in classrooms, use technology to address equity and social justice issues?
* How can schools and school districts ensure that, when they say they are adopting technology to address "digital equity" issues, they actually are addressing educational and social equity problems? Mar 19
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THE packages arrived by mail in October of the students’ senior year of high school. They consisted of brightly colored accordion folders containing about 75 sheets of paper. The sheets were filed with information about colleges: their admissions standards, graduation rates and financial aid policies. The students receiving the packages were mostly high-achieving, low-income students, and they were part of a randomized experiment.
Such numbers may seem proof that America is, indeed, online. But they mask an emerging division, one that has worrisome implications for our economy and society. Increasingly, we are a country in which only the urban and suburban well-off have truly high-speed Internet access, while the rest — the poor and the working class — either cannot afford access or use restricted wireless access as their only connection to the Internet.
RSVP required below. Helena Puig Larrauri is a freelance peacebuilding practitioner. Her work focuses on the use of technology for conflict transformation and social cohesion. She's currently working on projects in Sudan, Iraq, Libya, Cyprus, Macedonia and Romania.
FCC chairman Julius Genachowski wants to sell less spectrum to telecoms and leave more of it "open" for public use Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images A somewhat confusingly structured Cecilia Kang article (the inverted pyramid is not a great way to explain everything) has got the whole Internet abuzz about an FCC plan to build a national Super Wi-Fi network and the evil telecommunications companies who are trying to kill it. The FCC does have a good idea here and the telecommunications companies are evil, but there is no such plan. The key issue is the difference between a wireless spectrum that's owned by private firms and a wireless spectrum that's "free" and "open" to whomever. The reason you can tune into a TV or radio station and get a clear signal is that it's illegal for anyone other than the owner of the frequency in question to broadcast on it.
The federal government wants to create super WiFi networks across the nation, so powerful and broad in reach that consumers could use them to make calls or surf the Internet without paying a cellphone bill every month. The proposal from the Federal Communications Commission has rattled the $178 billion wireless industry, which has launched a fierce lobbying effort to persuade policymakers to reconsider the idea, analysts say. That has been countered by an equally intense campaign from Google , Microsoft and other tech giants who say a free-for-all WiFi service would spark an explosion of innovations and devices that would benefit most Americans, especially the poor. The airwaves that FCC officials want to hand over to the public would be much more powerful than existing WiFi networks that have become common in households. They could penetrate thick concrete walls and travel over hills and around trees.
African Americans in Mississippi often have fewer options for high-speed Internet and spend a higher proportion of their incomes on the Internet than whites in the state, according to a new report underscoring how the digital divide splits along racial lines. Mississippi ranks among the worst states in the nation in terms of broadband availability, and residents must choose among older, slower and less-reliable Internet technologies than people in other states, according to a report released Tuesday by the Center for Social Inclusion and the Mississippi NAACP. "We must implement aggressive and fair broadband infrastructure policies in order to bring Mississippi into the 21st century economy," Derrick Johnson, state president of the Mississippi State Conference NAACP, said in a statement.
( this post was originally published on MAG-Net for the # NotLovinIt Week of Action ) By Simran Noor, Coordinator of Advocacy From eighth grader, Joshua Edwards in Citronelle, Alabama to Daryl Bingham in Oak Brook, Illinois, people in communities without Internet access rely on third parties, in these cases a local McDonald’s, to access the Internet and leverage its many social, economic, educational and health benefits. No American should be forced to access Internet through a fast food restaurant. But for many, like Joshua and Daryl, this is their only option. The FCC’s Eighth Broadband Progress Report found that 19 million Americans still lack access to broadband.
Smartphones demonstrate what's wrong with emphasizing access over control In 1439, Johannes Gutenberg sparked an information revolution. The invention of movable type lowered barriers for sharing ideas, creating spaces for reformation and revolution. Today's Internet fulfills the same role, a flexible medium for sharing information and democratic communications. It was with this idealized Web in mind that President Obama used his 2011 State of the Union address to call for an expansion of next-generation mobile broadband. But in all this praise of the Internet, we can't forget one thing: The Internet is a democratizing technology not because users have access to services like Twitter and Facebook but because it supported the development of these tools in the first place.
Aaron Sonson, Satwant Singh, Gregory Paczkowski Stop& Search allows young people to rate their experience of being stopped and search by the police, to obtain information about their rights and to allow people to map the search and start seeing patterns. The team also produced this video to explain the functionality of the app for everyone who has no access to Android at the moment: More information download the app from the Android Market for free here . Mentor: Jeff Gilfelt of ReadyState Software
Given the dismal state of broadband connections in America, it was illuminating recently to hear a major telecom executive paint a rosy picture of where the country stands. When Wall Street Journal Deputy Managing Editor Alan Murray asked how the United States ranks in broadband, Verizon CEO Ivan Seidenberg didn't hesitate: "One. Not even close." To support his statement, Seidenberg claimed that "in the U.S., there is greater household penetration of access to the Internet than any country in Europe." Compare that with what Federal Communications Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski recently told a Senate committee: "Our record shows roughly 65 percent adoption in the U.S. compared to significantly higher adoption percentages—up to 90 percent or more—for some countries in Asia and Western Europe."
Education technology -- "Edtech" -- has become an area of intense innovation and debate -- with topics like Massive Open Online Courses , coding for kids , and tablets constantly attracting attention and sparking debate every day. But how are teachers and students responding to the constant influx of new digital tools? The latest Pew Research Center Internet and American Life survey of 2,500 Advanced Placement (AP) and National Writing Project (NWP) teachers from 6th to 12th grade suggests that while edtech is infiltrating classrooms, key disparities are affecting how teachers teach and how their students learn. Digital Divides Governed by Income Differences "Digital divide" describes differences in the population's access to and knowledge of digital technologies, and the Pew survey results identified a variety of factors driving the digital divide in schools.
From time to time, I'll give an overview of one broad MediaShift topic, annotated with online resources and plenty of tips. The idea is to help you understand the topic, learn the jargon, and take action. I've already covered blogging , citizen journalism and wikis . This week I'll look at the digital divide. What Is the Digital Divide? The digital divide is the chasm separating the haves and have-nots in digital technology.
The Living Wage Calculator is a website developed and maintained by Dr. Amy K. Glasmeier at MIT. The purpose of the Living Wage Calculator is to provide a snapshot of what it actually costs to survive in counties and cities in the United States. The Living Wage Calculator shows the differences between minimum wages and minimum living wages for each county and some cities in the U.S. The calculator accounts for eight different household scenarios from single adult to two adults and three children living in the same household.
By Kassie Bracken The Diploma Divide: Angelica Gonzales graduated at the top of her high school class and headed off to one of the nation’s top universities. Four years later she is back home, without a degree. Michael Stravato for The New York Times
(This is a long one.) So I hope no one minds if I continue to try to document the ways in which "education" is being reframed in this country at the peril, I think, of losing everything that is best about schools and teachers and classrooms. If you're not up to speed with these reframing efforts, the above titled article (1) in the Wall Street Journal this morning should do the trick.