Equity considerations and distance learning during COVID-19

Southern Education Foundation_Covid19 Distance Learning Equity Brief

Government officials are taking swift public health actions to slow the rapidly spreading COVID-19pandemic. By the end of March, statewide school closures affected 55.1 million K-12 public school students across our country.

  1. Over 20 million of these students live within the seventeen states covered by the Southern Education Foundation, and a majority of these students live in poverty.
  2. While school closures affect all students, students from underserved communities feel this impact even greater. Data on digital disparities reveal that nearly 20 percent of African American children ages 3-18 and 21 percent of families earning less than $40,000 per year have no access to the internet at home.
  3. The Southern Education Foundation is working to bring awareness to digital equity issues and provide state and district leaders with resources and promising practices as they make quick and difficult decisions to ensure that all students have access to learning opportunities during this crisis.