This post is sponsored by 4-H as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central. All opinions expressed are my own.
One thing that’s becoming more apparent at home, is the importance of high speed internet access for education. My kids didn’t use screens at home, or at least they weren’t using any before recent events, but they were using them at school. Not a lot, and not in place of other learning, but for important things. They played math games, learned to type, and wrote in digital journals. I had no idea! And now at home, I’m learning fast. There are times in which we all four have meetings at once. Des will have a read-aloud book from his teacher. Scarlet will have office hours with her teachers. Cassidy will have a conference call and I’ll have a virtual meeting with clients. It’s so much going on at once! And of course, we have outdoors time.
Why Internet Access is Crucial for Education Now:
As we all know, or are finding out, limited high speed internet access makes everyday tasks much more difficult. And by everyday tasks, I might mean looking for jobs, applying to colleges, and connecting with peers. 4-H partnered with Microsoft through a national survey to explore digital access for teens. And 1,500 young people between the ages of 13 and 19 believe that their career prospects and the likelihood of them attaining financial success depends on broadband access. Yet almost half of these teenagers say that they’ve struggled to do their homework due to slow internet connections. 1 in 4 American teens have unreliable broadband connections.
More about the survey:
The 4-H/Microsoft survey results also indicate that limited broadband access is a barrier to opportunity and can have lasting impacts on young people. The study found that nearly half of teens report struggling to complete homework due to slow internet connections. And they reported that 79% of teens with broadband access expect to have a higher income than their parents, while only 66% of teens without broadband access felt this way.
Teens without high-speed internet access are also less confident about graduating high school. And they’re less optimistic about higher education and career opportunities. Lastly, 8 in 10 teens believe that high-speed internet access could improve their local economy. Now my kids are not teens yet, but it’s been super eye-opening to watch them use technology for the last seven weeks or so. And I know that this whole experience caused problems within the digital learning process, as some kids have access to computers and internet access, and some didn’t, but now do. Or maybe they still don’t. No matter what, it’s such an important study to read about.