SEATTLE, Feb. 17, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — A new paper published in Socius by researchers at the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington School of Medicine finds large disparities in children’s access to technology for online schooling in the United States. COVID-19 is the largest school disruption event in history, with hundreds of millions of learners out of school. Data from the fall of 2020 revealed that 10.1% of children participating in online learning lacked adequate access to either the internet or a computer. When researchers looked at parental race/ethnicity and educational attainment, they found that rates of inadequate access varied greatly for each variable individually and when the two were combined.
- Rates of inadequate access varied nearly 20-fold when both parental race/ethnicity and education levels were taken into account, from 1.9% among children of Asian parents with a graduate degree to 35.5% among children of Black parents with less than a high school education.
- Rates varied four-fold by race and ethnicity, from 3.8% for Asian parents to 15.6% for Black parents.
- Rates varied five-fold by parental education, from 3.9% for parents with graduate degrees to 20.3% for parents with less than a high school education.
The findings align with previous studies suggesting that COVID-19 is exacerbating existing race and class disparities in schooling, and highlight the importance of looking at these gaps with an intersectional approach. The data also point to the need for investments in universal access to learning resources.
The full paper is available online.
About the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation
The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) is an independent global health research organization at the University of Washington School of Medicine that provides rigorous and comparable measurement of the world’s most important health problems and evaluates the strategies used to address them. IHME is committed to transparency and makes this information widely available so that policymakers have the evidence they need to make informed decisions on allocating resources to improve population health.
SOURCE Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation