“What About Those Families That Don’t Have a Computer?”

“Our school is moving toward a 1-to-1 technology initiative, with iPads for every student in the school.  Yet, there are some families that still don’t have a computer at home.  Should we make accommodation for them?”

This is an excellent question, and one that I’ve always wanted to answer with, “Really?  Are there families still asking this question?”  While in some instances it is understandable based on the school’s market, it’s an encouraging sign that more and more schools are enacting 1 to 1 computing intiatives, where every student in the school receives an iPad, or, at least, a Chromebook.  Some schools have even done away with homework, but that’s a topic for another day.

If there are families that prefer to not utilize a computer, and some simple accommodation must be provided for them, that’s one thing.  However, realizing that parents are the first educators of their children, and the school’s role is to assist the parents in the education of their children, not to have a computer at home is doing the child a disservice.  Moreover, in 2014, new standardized testing will start to become the norm.  These tests will be administered on computer and timed, and questions will include an essay component so that children can provide explanations for their answers.

The short answer – if parents don’t have a computer at home, their children won’t be prepared for the workforce they’re going to enter.