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Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Take-Home Devices vs. ‘Summer Slide’

More school districts are allowing students to take home school-issued devices over the summer break to reduce learning losses known as the “summer slide.”

There is no research yet to back the success of the practice, but educators say they hope that letting students use school laptops or tablets to extend learning through the summer will bridge the gap between haves and have-nots by providing access to students who otherwise wouldn’t have it.

“Summer is the most unequal time in America,” Matthew Boulay, interim CEO of the National Summer Learning Association, told NPR. “I think we tend to have this idyllic view of what childhood summers are, but the reality is that for kids living in poverty, summer can be a time of isolation and hunger.”

There are, however, observers concerned that districts need to supply parents with instructions on proper device use at home so the technology isn’t wasted on games rather than educational content and so it doesn’t pull kids away from family activities during the summer.

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