Barriers to Getting Educators Online, by
Denise Ethier and Jennifer Gold
NCIPnet Discussion: Access to Telecommunications
The following posts illustrate a discussion "thread" - online posts
to NCIPnet - about access to telecommunications.
October 19, 1994. AR (NCIPnet Facilitator):
I attended a
night-part of a series of the Department of Education's Goals 2000
Town Meetings. The topic was Learning On-Line: Education and the
Superhighway. The comment that got the biggest reaction from both
audience and the group I was sitting and watching with was when a
commented that the most difficult part of the so-called "information
superhighway" to build is the last 20 feet--into the classroom itself.
said "Build it and we will come"
I was wondering what your experiences have been in gaining access
October 19, 1994 RB (Teacher)
I log on from my home. I do have one
line at my school but it is very limited from one office and I have to
the computer into that office when it is not in use. The largest
seems to be finding a dedicated line. I teach computers and would
have a dedicated line in my class so I could expose my students to
telecommunications. It seems to be a battle many of us are fighting.
October 20, 1994 BM (Computer Specialist)
I watched the same Town
with the President of our Parent's Group. I could not believe that we
the only ones there at that site! Yesterday, I went to a network
coordinators meeting 90 miles away with people from 13 counties. It
sound like others had heard about it much less seen it. Doesn't sound
the advertising was what it should have been. Our meeting yesterday
included sections on telecommunications. Interest and participation
growing, but it is much harder for those of us in rural areas. I think
because we do have to depend on long distance connections, and
Because of the increased costs, fewer people are using networks so
results in less discussion between people about the benefits from
about two years, I have been working with my home computer,
because I had
not been able to get one at school. This year, I have just gotten a
and phone lab in my computer lab.
October 28, 1994 TH (Teacher)
There are thousands of buildings in
country, with millions of people in them who have no telephones, no
television, no reasonable prospect of broadband services. They're
schools." This is a quote from Reed E. Hundt, FCC Chair. I don't think
far off the mark. I am in a building which is seventy-five years old.
have one accessible plug in each classroom. Unfortunately, telephone
do not seem to in future plans, although we have approached the
and PTO, as well as researching grant possibilities. We will not give
November 14, 1994 GP (Teacher)
I found an article from SCIENCE
advertising that $4.5 million was put aside for implementing
telecommunications in the classroom. Unfortunately the dates for
had already gone by. It makes you wonder how much money might
be out there
for the asking that we do not hear about.
November 28, 1994 FD (Technology Coordinator)
I remember reading
last year that said somewhere around $4-6 million in grants goes
every year because people don't know about it. It's shameful, really.
of my responsibilities as Technology Coordinator is to look for
technology-related grants, but I could do that on a full-time basis