Opinion
Curriculum Letter to the Editor

Assuaging Technology Fears

August 18, 2020 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

To the Editor:

After reading the article “COVID-19 & Remote Learning: How to Make It Work,” (“Special Report: How We Go Back to School,” July 22, 2020), it looks like school administrators are forgetting the library media specialist again. The article links to a document with six ways educators can help parents with remote learning next school year, but perhaps library media specialists could also provide guidance.

Some parents will find the list limiting or uncomfortable because it does not address many technological fears they have.

During the pandemic, library media specialists can help bridge the gap between school systems’ aging IT infrastructures and the technology students have at home. Their role during pandemic and nonpandemic times is to help children stay engaged in reading and learning by implementing the pre-K-12 curriculum on information literacy. They know how to assist students in understanding lessons no matter what type of technology they use.

As a library media specialist, I offer three additional steps:

1. Don’t force students and parents to use the school’s technology.

2. Use school software that is compatible with parents’ personal digital devices.

3. Have parents and educators contact a library media specialist to help obtain resources for lessons.

Before schools closed due to the pandemic, I had followed the three steps above so that I could teach students how to use the technology they owned to continue our lessons. I used the school’s personalized learning applications to allow students to keep developing their information-literacy skills through their phones and tablets on their own time, used free software that even older computers or tablets could handle, and provided feedback over email.

School systems should allow library media specialists to help parents, teachers, and principals do what is in their job description.

Lorette S.J. Weldon

Adjunct Faculty Professor

University of Maryland Global Campus

Adelphi, Md.

A version of this article appeared in the August 19, 2020 edition of Education Week as Assuaging Technology Fears

Events

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Data Webinar
Education Insights with Actionable Data to Create More Personalized Engagement
The world has changed during this time of pandemic learning, and there is a new challenge faced in education regarding how we effectively utilize the data now available to educators and leaders. In this session
Content provided by Microsoft
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
School & District Management Webinar
Accelerate Learning with Project-Based Learning
Earlier this year, the George Lucas Educational Foundation released four new studies highlighting how project-based learning (PBL) helps accelerate student learning—across age groups, multiple disciplines, and different socio-economic statuses. With this year’s emphasis on unfinished
Content provided by SmartLab Learning
School & District Management Live Online Discussion Principal Overload: How to Manage Anxiety, Stress, and Tough Decisions
According to recent surveys, more than 40 percent of principals are considering leaving their jobs. With the pandemic, running a school building has become even more complicated, and principals' workloads continue to grow. If we

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Curriculum From Our Research Center Privacy, Porn, and Parents in the Room: Sex Education's Pandemic Challenges
After more than a year of instructional shifts and social isolation, students need sex education that is media-savvy and relationship-wise.
7 min read
Conceptual image of students feeling isolated, but also trying to connect.
Mary Haasdyk for Education Week
Curriculum Calls to Ban Books by Black Authors Are Increasing Amid Critical Race Theory Debates
Books about race and the experiences of Black Americans are being challenged by parents who claim they make white children feel uncomfortable.
8 min read
Fans of Angie Thomas, a Jackson, Miss., resident whose book, "The Hate U Give," has been on a national young adult best-seller list for over 80 weeks, show off their copies at a reception and book signing for the author, in Jackson on Oct. 10, 2018. Thomas' novel has crossed over to a wider audience than simply young adults. The reception honored her writing as well as the coming release of the big screen adaption of the first novel.
The young adult best-seller "The Hate U Give" was one of the top 10 most challenged books of 2020.
Rogelio V. Solis/AP
Curriculum District That Banned Diverse Books Reverses Its Decision After Pushback
A Pennsylvania district voted unanimously to reinstate a four-page list of resources from some of today's most acclaimed creators of color.
Tina Locurto, The York Dispatch, Pa.
3 min read
Image of books on a library shelf.
iStock/Getty
Curriculum He Taught About White Privilege and Got Fired. Now He's Fighting to Get His Job Back
Matthew Hawn is an early casualty in this year's fight over how teachers can discuss with students America's struggle with racism.
13 min read
Social studies teacher Matthew Hawn is accused of insubordination and repeated unprofessional conduct for sharing Kyla Jenèe Lacey's, 'White Privilege', poem with his Contemporary Issues class. Hawn sits on his couch inside his home on August 17, 2021.
Matthew Hawn is accused of insubordination and repeated unprofessional conduct for lessons and materials he used to teach about racism and white privilege in his Contemporary Issues class at Sullivan Central High School in Blountville, Tenn.<br/>
Caitlin Penna for Education Week