Trump touts rural broadband internet access in $1 trillion infrastructure plan

Rural communities’ broadband internet access has become a key part of President Donald Trump’s $1 trillion infrastructure proposal, which would promote high-speed internet access across rural America, including schools, classrooms and libraries.

Schools’ access to high-speed broadband internet is not a new topic of debate, however–for years, policymakers and ed-tech stakeholder groups have advocated for more funding and better infrastructure to help schools establish reliable high-speed internet connections.

Much of those advocacy efforts have focused on the fact that rural students cannot develop the skills needed to compete and succeed in an increasingly global workforce if they cannot connect to the internet and use digital resources and tools.…Read More

5 ways technology can support educators in an environment of expanding school choice

President Trump’s recent education budget proposal has received a great deal of attention for cutting education by $9.2 billion or 13.6 percent. The administration is proposing an additional $400 million for vouchers and $1 billion more in Title 1 funds to support school choice. While details of the budget will evolve as it moves through the congressional approval process, it is likely that we will see an increase in funding that expands school choice.

School choice is a controversial topic with advocates believing it will drive innovation in education and civil rights advocates and education reform leaders raising concerns about the unintended consequences to public schools, especially those serving the most vulnerable population, low-income families.

In a recent study by the Associated Press NORC Center for Public Research examining Americans’ understanding and attitude towards school choice, 47 percent of respondents said they favor expansion of charter schools and 45 percent favor vouchers. In that same study, 58 percent have heard little about charter schools and 66 percent have heard little about school vouchers.…Read More

Can traditional public schools win in an age of school choice? Yes—and here’s how

Traditional public schools must ensure continued success in order to compete for students against charter schools, online learning, and other forms of education. Dissatisfied students, parents, and even staff leave schools that need to work harder than ever to regain the confidence of staff and community. But what practices can public schools implement to increase retention and improve student outcomes?

In “The Public School in an Age of Choice: How to Compete for the Win,” Kevin Baird, chairman of the board at the nonprofit Center for College & Career Readiness, presented the issues traditional public schools currently face in retaining students and staff, as well as the solutions that can lead to higher retention and student success.

Challenge: Slow Improvements…Read More

4 points DeVos makes about school choice

U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos offered a vague look at the Trump Administration’s plans for school choice during her keynote at the American Federation for Children’s National Policy Summit.

In her remarks, DeVos again emphasized the administration’s support for local control of education, and she urged states to invest in school choice plans.

She also highlighted examples of students who have used school choice programs to achieve academic success.…Read More