All children deserve the opportunity to learn. In the wake of COVID-19, schools nationwide have closed their doors abruptly in a desperate attempt to curb exposure. This was a necessary step in the interest of public health, but the unintended consequence is finally highlighting the divide between those who have and those who don’t among our students and educators.
Online learning is only possible for children who have access to a safe and quiet space, a computer, and reliable internet. The same applies for educators who need to teach. Not all home environments are able to transform immediately into learning environments.
There is a simple step that would help get students back on track: Free access to the internet.
And it’s within reach. Internet service providers are stepping up all over the country to help get our students and teachers back online and they should do the same in Prince George’s County. You can help us.
As we enter Teacher Appreciation Week, we want you to know that we see you. Educators like you have gone to extraordinary lengths to adapt lessons and develop a curriculum based entirely in e-learning, but we lack a foundation that can only be provided through the support of government and private corporations; namely, no-cost reliable access to the internet.
Sign our petition
to the CEOs of Comcast and Verizon and to our state and federal legislators to immediately and publicly show your support. Demand free internet access to all of Prince George’s County students and educators because it is the right thing to do. If students have public education for free; they should also have internet access for free.
Our voices together will get our kids learning again. We hope you will join us in this movement!
Theresa Mitchell Dudley
Prince George’s County Educators’ Association