To stop digital ‘redlining’ and help students, make the internet an essential utility

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To stop digital ‘redlining’ and help students, make the internet an essential utility

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Last year, Gov. Gavin Newsom signed Senate Bill 98 to help ensure that all of our children are able to successfully continue their education virtually through the Internet. Unfortunately, although this requirement on our educators came with significant funding, the California State Legislature did not couple it with any requirements for internet service providers to actually provide service.

We have seen this problem manifest acutely in the many school districts around the state that are scrambling to keep students connected. California’s surge in COVID-19 cases means remote education will continue to be the safest way to continue learning for many students in the weeks and months ahead. But the need for connectivity will not end after the pandemic.

If we truly want to level the playing field for students in California — to ensure all students have access to the technology and tools that not only help them access their learning remotely but will be needed for success the rest of their lives — we cannot rest until the internet flows like electricity.

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The Sacramento Bee

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This item was submitted on April 4, 2021 by Dana Lee Bell using the form “Share Your Story” on the site “A Journal of the Plague Year”:

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