Naomi Schaefer Riley’s NYT’s piece “America’s Real Digital Divide” illustrates the disproportionate usage of screens by people of color. The problem of overreliance upon screens is further exacerbated by the fact that in many of our communities the only STEM “education” offered is what can be done on a screen (things we know to be little more than Skinner Boxes–highly ineffective at actual helping students learn the underlying logic of STEM or how to think critically).
Technology has been the promised panacea that would cure many of the social ills faced by our communities–especially as it relates to education gaps. It is for that reason that in many of our schools one sees an early adoption of technology and an overreliance upon it. So, as we sound the alarm about the harms done to developing brains by screens, who is going to get the word out in these communities? Will there be an effort made to spread the word specifically to these communities that use these technologies disproportionately? What will be offered as a substitute for these harmful STEM tools/programs?