Maybe it's this nasty head cold, but today I sent an email to Apple asking for computers for my kids schools' embarrassingly outdated computer lab - the computers are over 10 years old and we live in Silicon Valley.
Yes, there are worse things in the world....but today I want to do something about a need on my own doorstep.
Here's the letter...
SUBJECT: Apple takes a bite out of the digital divide
Yes, I know the headline is a bit cheesy, but I am hoping it could be true.
I am a parent of 2 students who currently go to Ellis Elementary in Sunnyvale. Budget cuts have impacted every school and Ellis is no exception. Ellis Elementary is right in the heart of Silicon Valley and this year just made it out of the Title 1 (see below) which means we lost additional funding. This is a mixed blessing - it also means that the overall student population is no longer considered "high-poverty" or "economically disadvantaged".
The students at Ellis are truly amazing and come from a variety of backgrounds - from those who are hard working, but "economically disadvantaged" to those who have the benefits of working in hi-tech, including good salaries and high parental education. I volunteer in the classroom a couple of hours a week and see first hand the range of abilities of these students.
Apple Computers has continued to raise the bar for real "personal computing" since the beginning. With the new iPad, I believe we are entering an new era - and one that could revolutionize education and in providing economic computing for disadvantaged students. Embarrassingly, while our school sits in the heart of Silicon Valley, our computer lab is 10 years old. Some computers are so old that they cannot run software that is integral to our ELD (English Language Development) curriculum. We do not have enough working computers for one per student, and working computers sometimes take up more troubleshooting resources than teaching time.
Bottom line: We need a new lab, and I think we deserve a state of the art computer lab. I hope Apple computers will help Ellis Elementary achieve this goal. A loftier goal would be to make sure that every student at Ellis Elementary has access to a computer at home.
Although I am not contacting you as school official, I know that any help would be greatly welcomed and I will personally commit to helping make this happen in any way I can, from coordinating with the school to working with your PR and marketing departments.
Please feel free to call or email me if you have any questions or comments about this.
Lesley TaylorAbout Title 1
Title I funds are targeted to high-poverty schools and districts and used to provide educational services to students who are educationally disadvantaged or at risk of failing to meet state standards.
Labels: apple, education, ipad, iphone, learning, schools, students