6. Open community-based computer centers so children from low-income families aren’t left behind.
“Create computer centers, staffed by trained, paid teachers in community centers and churches that are in our poorest neighborhoods,” recommended Terri Yearicks, network manager and ITV director for Griffin Elementary School in Florida.
“The biggest trend I see is the incorporation of online education [in] K-12. In fact, here in Florida, it has become state law that every student take one online class in order to graduate high school. While the idea is good, it does not provide computers and internet access to our many poor students. I work at a Title 1 school with an 83-percent poverty level, so I speak from experience. These centers need to be totally funded, including the teacher’s salary of no less than $20 an hour, by local businesses. The businesses would then have better trained young people and would receive a tax write-off for their involvement in the project. In addition, teachers struggling to make ends meet can choose to work the few extra hours a day to supplement their waning income. Plus, this would give our poorest students access to technology so that truly, NO child will be left behind!”