SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — Guidelines for California schools to reopen are expected in early June.
State Superintendent Tony Thurmond gave an update Wednesday, saying limiting class sizes means some students will still be learning online. Now state leaders are looking to bridge the digital divide.
They call it the digital divide because some students in the state still may not have access to their classes, missing things like Chromebooks or reliable internet access.
On Wednesday, Superintendent Thurmond said some 600,000 kids in California are still waiting for their own computer and thousands still need a mobile hotspot.
Teachers say they have witnessed a number of different scenarios.
“Some students had access maybe through one computer. Now there’s three or four students and they’re competing with their parents, so it’s been very challenging,” David Fisher said.
Now the Department of Education wants to close that gap and is calling on California companies to step up and help. They’re asking for at least $500 million to make this happen.
“There’s no other way to say it other than the fact that more is needed,” Thurmond said. “To come forward and make a commitment that supports the students in California.”
As for what classes could look like, more learning online also means some smaller in-person classes. Thurmond said there’s no direct approach, no one size fits all, and every district has to figure out what’s best for them.