As schools increasingly roll out digital-device programs and ramp up technology in preparation for new online assessments, rural districts are relying on online classes to provide technology training, according to a recent article by The Hechinger Report.
The article highlights Washoe County, Nev., where teachers have to travel to more populated districts for in-person training to learn how to use technology in the classroom. Technology specialists in the district recently designed an online course that will train rural teachers on ways to use technology in the classroom. Nearly 100 teachers in the state have completed the course, which will launch this summer for teachers across the country.
Nationwide, rural districts often lack access to the Internet and struggle to recruit and retain teachers, especially those with technology know-how. Districts also may lack funds to upgrade technology and bandwidth. The Federal Communications Commission recently proposed ways to modernize the E-Rate program, which seeks to bring high-speed Internet access to every school and library. In the wake of that proposal, six rural education organizations expressed concern that the proposal could put some rural schools at a disadvantage.
A version of this news article first appeared in the Rural Education blog.