By Bob Katzen
This bill would establish a 14-member commission to research the best way of acquiring technology for Massachusetts students, including how to incentivize companies to take part in a program to provide personal computers or tablets to students. As part of its research, the commission will review the current policies in place to provide students with a personal computer or tablet and the barriers to providing all students with one. It would also evaluate the effect on benefits or drawbacks to providing students with a personal computer or tablet and its effects on the digital divide.
“As the pandemic has shown, a lack of access to technology can inhibit students’ ability to learn and thrive,” said sponsor Rep. Brad Jones (R-North Reading). “Through the work of this commission, the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education would have a better understanding of how to equip students with the technology they need at a manageable cost. I am disappointed the bill was placed in a study order, but plan to re-file it for the upcoming legislative session.”