School’s Back, But the Homework Gap Persists

How can schools address the homework gap when they don’t have adequate funding?

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August 2020, Volume 43, Issue 12

As schools begin to reopen for the 2020-2021 school year, big questions remain for education leaders—thanks in part to several versions of the coronavirus rescue package that have shortchanged schools nationwide. One of those questions: How do schools address the homework gap, which has gotten worse during the coronavirus, when they don’t have adequate funding?

NAESP has been pushing for a $4 billion increase to the Federal Communications Commission’s E-Rate program to address the “homework gap,” experienced by the nearly 17 million students living in poverty and those in rural communities who can’t access remote learning opportunities. Even before the current crisis, these students faced significant challenges with finishing their schoolwork from home because of broadband accessibility issues. The current long-term school closures have only elevated these inequities.

Without targeted funds to help students who lack internet access at home, too many students will be denied the fundamental right to a high-quality education. Boosting the E-Rate program, which is uniquely positioned as the only federal program that supports internet connectivity in schools and libraries, will provide students the necessary Wi-Fi hotspots, modems, routers, and connected devices to access remote learning opportunities and effectively engage with their teachers and fellow classmates

As K-12 education systems face an uncertain path ahead, the past can provide a roadmap for the future: During economic turmoil, districts and schools need robust resources to ensure students receive high-quality instruction and services to support their social, emotional, and mental health needs. Please make your voice heard and tell Congress to step up and ensure our nation’s public schools have the necessary resources to support their students during this time of crisis.

Take action and push for adequate federal funding through NAESP’s Advocacy Action Center.


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