The SocioEconomic Tech Divide: Beginning to Close the Gap

You’ve found this blog post, so you’re obviously enjoying whatever Internet access you’ve got, right?

Do something good for a family in need this holiday who may not be able to manage the mondo cost of high-speed, perpetually-on Internet access some of us enjoy — let them know this is available to them:

http://www.internetessentials.com/

And then let Comcast know that this is an appreciated action. THEN let other technology product and service providers know we expect to see them do more to help close the divide as well.

Yes, there are still millions of kids out there who cannot do the research they’re expected to for their homework assignments — because they don’t have Internet access – or even a computer – at home. Some of us just take this stuff for granted. No, I’m not pitching for Comcast. Just making folks aware who may not be. We all need to be aware of this issue and actively doing something to level the playing field for those who need our help. Nothing to me is more unfair than the socioeconomic gap between “The Haves” and “The Have Nots”. Nice to see big business beginning to care and starting to do something to help. Other government and big business need to follow this example. Knowledge and opportunity should be available fairly and equally to all.

Perhaps the more we are aware and demand it from our vendors, leaders and government, the more we’ll see it happen — and THEN we’ll really begin to see some economic recovery in our country.

LL

UM’s Deborah Ball confirmed to National Board for Education Sciences

This is inspirational to folks like myself who hope to have a positive impact on the education industry:

On June 22, 2010, the United States Senate unanimously approved the appointment of Dean Deborah Loewenberg Ball to the National Board for Education Sciences. President Barack Obama announced his nomination of Ball on February 23, 2010.

UM’s Deborah Ball confirmed to National Board for Education Sciences.

Great Tech Stuff going on at UD Mercy

Courtesy of WWJ’s GLITR, this is a long page, but a great read, especially for those wanting to know where you can learn the latest, or for those who may not believe gems like this not only exist, but thrive in the heart of The D. Thanks for the great article, Matt…

Read more: Lots Of Great Stuff In The City On A Tech Tour Of UD Mercy – WWJ Newsradio 950.

Online Public High School in MI: Did You Know?

Michigan is now finally among the number of other states before it to become part of this new online education trend — now students can enroll in online public high school from the comfort of their bedroom and bunny slippers. What? Did your eyes just get bigger? I’m sure they did — and yes, this is definitely a good topic of debate amongst parents, teachers, tax payers and more. Will this work? Is this even good? What will be missing? What about teacher jobs?

Share your thoughts…

Michigan Virtual Charter Academy: Schools Offering the Full K¹² Program

www.k12.com/mvca

The Michigan Virtual Charter Academy (MVCA) is an online charter school authorized by Grand Valley State University to serve students in grades K-12 statewide.

http://www.k12.com/curriculum_and_products/participating-schools-in-michigan

Laptops Don’t Have to Be Classroom Distraction

U-M faculty is learning how to make laptops work FOR them and their students in the classroom, instead of allowing them to be learning deterrents:

“If you allow laptops in the classroom without a plan for how you’ll use them, you can potentially invite disaster. It’s unlikely that students will be so entranced by class material that they won’t wander off to their favorite social networking sites,” Samson says. “The key is to deliberately engage students through their computers. LectureTools does just that.”

LectureTools is an interactive student response system and teaching module. Instructors at more than 400 colleges and universities have set up accounts to use it.

More at http://ur.umich.edu/0910/May24_10/1260-how-laptops-can

U-M honored as Employer of the Year for innovative internships

By Joe Serwach  |  News Service

The university has been named nonprofit Employer of the Year by Crain’s Detroit Business and the Detroit Regional Chamber’s InterninMichigan.com program.

Because students who intern in Michigan are far more likely to take permanent jobs here, the chamber has made boosting internships a major priority at its last two Mackinac Regional Policy Conferences. The award, presented for the first time this year, recognizes U-M’s innovative Development Summer Internship Program.

“Our commitment to the Michigan economy includes creating and supporting careers for new graduates. We want to keep talented graduates in the state, and internships are an excellent path to full-time employment,” President Mary Sue Coleman says. “We are pleased to expose students to careers in philanthropy through our innovative Development Summer Internship Program.”

Quoted from http://www.ur.umich.edu/update/archives/100604/internships:

The Top 50 Proprietary Programs that Drive You Crazy — and Their Open Source Alternatives | WHDb

Here’s another one for my fellow educators doing it on a shoestring:

The following fifty proprietary programs are listed in no particular order within broad categories along with their open source alternatives. In some cases you could probably write your own book on frustrations with the proprietary programs shown here. In other cases, you’ll discover that the open source alternative isn’t quite up to snuff yet. And, in other cases still, you’ll learn that some proprietary programs are real gems, but that the open source advocate can replace those gems with equally shiny objects from the open source repertoire.

via The Top 50 Proprietary Programs that Drive You Crazy — and Their Open Source Alternatives | WHDb.

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