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Bridging the digital divide: How schools can prepare students to be good digital citizens in low socio economic areas


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As technology moves at a rapid pace it is important to review how students from low socio economic areas are catered for. Schools in these areas face many challenges; how they address these issues impacts on the students’ participation and skills as digital and global citizens. The government is implementing policies and funding to reduce the digital divide, but is it enough to prepare students from low socio economic areas to function effectively as digital citizens.

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Bridging the digital divide: How schools can prepare students to be good digital citizens in low socio economic areas

  1. 1. Presented by K. Williams
  2. 2. Image: Exhausted your Classroom a reflection of the Industrial Age ?
  3. 3. Image: Working Late Digital citizenship: Informed & participatory citizenry, whose online behaviours uphold legal, ethical, safe, responsible & respectful use of technology Manitoba education (2006, p17)
  4. 4. Image: untitled
  5. 5. Image: pd running Are you setting less confident students drill and practice problems on the computer? ...Whilst the digitally literate students access creative work? Image: iPaddr
  6. 6. •Advantaged students use ICT in instrumental wayseg. sending emails, research and collaborativeprojects•Disadvantaged students use ICT for entertainmentpurposes and are subjected to remedial drills eg. downloading music.
  7. 7. Schools must provide students with‘equality in access’ and ‘equity in opportunity’. Image: In my bag today 2
  8. 8. Discussion Questions•Should the school refuse to advocate spending large amounts of thebudget on technology and increase funds spent on training teachers tointegrate these technologies in progressive and sound ways?•Should the school have an instructional technology specialist who isalso a trained teacher educator, employed to assist teachers, studentsand the community in learning about digital citizenship and using newtechnologies, whilst providing technology support to fix computers?•Are you a digital immigrant? What professional strategies or networkswill you undertake to become or remain digitally literate to provide thebest experiences and knowledge to support your students as digitalcitizens?
  9. 9. Recommended readings Banister, S., & Fischer, J. (2010). Overcoming the Digital Divide: The Story of anUrban Middle School. Mid-Western Educational Researcher, 23(2), 2-8. Gibbs, M. G., Dosen, A, J., & Guerrero, R, B. (2011). Bridging the Digital Divide:Changing the technological landscape of Inner-City Catholic Schools. UrbanEducation, 44(11) 11-29. Doi:10.1177/0042085908318528. Morse, T, E. (2004). Ensuring Equality of Educational Opportunity in the DigitalAge. Education and Urban Society, 36(3), 266-279.Doi:10.1177/0013124504264103. Owen, M.( 2008). The Digital Divide and Social Justice, Barriers to Citizenship inthe Information Society. Honors Colloquium on Communication and Social Justice,Dr. Shannon B. Campbell. Retrieved March 25th, 2011 from Snyder, I., & Nieuwenhuysen, J. (2010). Closing the Gap in Education? Victoria,Australia: Monash University Publishing.