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STATE OF OPPORTUNITY. Can Kids in Michigan Get Ahead?
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This special reporting project wrapped up in May 2017. Read more.
Technology

Think Again: do poor kids have any technical opportunities?

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For today's "Think Again," we're using this space to return your attention to stories you might have missed about technology and opportunity. 

One readers had this to say about our post on "technical entitlement":

Are you kidding? Making sure that students don't "self-select" themselves from opportunities? Have you seen the state of basic "technological opportunities" in low SES communities?...Our school libraries have eliminated "media specialists" so who in heck is keeping up those computers? GEEZ does anyone pay attention to what is going on? Those who are tech savvy and have access to tech are like those who do not have access to print in their communities!!! Where are these kids going to get access, let alone access to knowledge of basic coding?

We like to think we've been paying attention for a while now to the disparities in the technology available (or not) to kids from low-income communities.  We have many more topics to cover, so we welcome your constructive suggestions as we continue exploring what it means to give all kids a crack at a future that's guaranteed to be more tech oriented.

But, since context is everything, here's a recap of our coverage on what different technological developments mean for kids with few opportunities at home or at school. 

Last summer our youth journalist Alex, asked, "Why should kids learn how to code?" Some of our Facebook friends, rightly, questioned whether all kids should learn to code and what about kids with learning disabilities who may not be able to learn to code in traditional ways? We took up their questions in this post, "Our unequal technological future." 

Alex also looked at the summer achievement gap and what this means for kids who have little to no access to the internet when school is out for the season, much less in their homes. This achievement gap, rooted in a deep digital divide, has implications for how kids are tracked and whether utopian promises of customization really matter when schools are struggling to meet basic technological needs. 

And, of course, Dustin Dwyer's latest documentary took us into Congress Elementary School for a look behind the school's reputation for low performance on the MEAP. Listen again to hear what kinds of strides the teachers and administrators there are making with the students despite being strapped for resources. 

What about your school? Are you making do with old equipment or finding ways to "make a way out of no way?" Tell us in the comments.