Promoting Educational Equity Through Access to Digital Learning Opportunities

“Digitalisation in schools is not just a nice to have, but a basic existential requirement for the future of Germany as a location for education and business,” says eco Chair Oliver Süme. “In order to further promote the widespread use of digital teaching and learning concepts regardless of social background or location, we need joint and binding initiatives from the federal and state governments.” The rapid further training of teachers for digital teaching as well as investments in digital infrastructures are indispensable for this, Süme added.

The Association of the Internet Industry therefore also welcomes the proposal by the federal state of Berlin submitted to the German Federal Council (Bundesrat) which aims to ensure the participation of pupils in digital learning opportunities. For example, the Bundesrat should call on the German federal government to provide all children of benefit recipients with access to a digital end device in order to create greater educational equity.

More than half of the Germans would like to see the expansion of digital educational opportunities

The fact that there is a need for political action above all in the area of digital education was also confirmed by a representative survey conducted nationwide in July and August, which eco commissioned from the market and opinion research institute Civey*. When asked which digital policy measures are particularly important during the Covid-19 pandemic, 54 percent of those surveyed stated that they would expand digital educational offerings. In addition to the expansion of digital infrastructures (67.8 percent), this was also the second most frequently cited response, followed by IT security and data protection (46.5 percent).

In addition, the response was above average, especially among those who are currently dependent on digital offerings for education and training. For example, 79.7 percent of the persons currently still in education stated that they felt that the expansion of digital educational offerings was particularly important at present; among students, this figure was 67 percent.

“Digital education concerns us all, so we should not limit the expansion of learning opportunities to schools alone,” Süme continued. “Vocational schools and universities must not be forgotten when developing new IT solutions in order to enable digital learning in all social and age groups in the long term.”

The Association of the Internet Industry is committed to the expansion of digital educational offerings. Last year, eco signed up to the “Digital Literacy Charter” with which a broad alliance from politics, business, science and society wants to convey a comprehensive understanding of education in the digital world.

Download graphic: Which digital policy measures are particularly important?

*The market and opinion research company Civey surveyed 2503 people between 31 July and 1 August 2020 on behalf of eco – Association of the Internet Industry. The results are representative. The statistical error of the overall results is 3.5 percent.

Promoting Educational Equity Through Access to Digital Learning Opportunities

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