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Statistics: Schools & Libraries

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Statistics: Universal Service

Pres. Clinton Giving Speech

Our . . . challenge is to provide Americans with the educational opportunities we'll all need for [the 21st] century. In our schools, every classroom in America must be connected to the information superhighway with computers and good software and well-trained teachers. We are working with the telecommunications industry, educators, and parents to connect . . . every classroom and every library in the entire United States by the year 2000. -- President Clinton's State of the Union Address, January 23, 1996.

Universal Service

Erate

Access to the Internet in Schools

  • In 2002, 99% of public schools had access to the Internet, compared to 35% in 1994. [p.33, 34]
  • In 2002, 94% of public schools reported using broadband connections for Internet access, compared to 80% in 2000 and 85% in 2001. In 2002, as in previous years, the use of broadband connections is directly related to school size; 90% of small schools reported using broadband connections to access the Internet, compared with 100% of the large schools. Most notably, the use of broadband connections in schools with the highest minority enrollment increased from 81% to 95% between 2000 and 2002. Similarly, during the same time period, the percentage of schools with the highest poverty concentration (as measured by the percent of students eligible for free or reduced-price lunch) using broadband connections to access the Internet increased from 75% to 95%. [p.10, 33, 34]
  • According to the Department of Education, Internet access using broadband connections has increased from 75% in 2000 to 95% in 2002 among the schools with the highest poverty concentration. [p.36]
  • [p.33]
  • Classrooms
    • More than 92% of public school classrooms have Internet access. [p. 10]. compared to 3% in 1994 and 77% in 2000. [p.33, 34]
Year Percent 
Schools 
Wired
Percent
Classrooms
Wired
1994 35 3
1995
50 8
1996  65 14
1997 78 27
1998 89*
1999 93*
2000 95*
2001

*Projected numbers. Source: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, Digest of Education Statistics 1997, 458 Figure 33 & table 415 (December 1997) (Mean number of all computers per school 1995: 72. Percent of computers with Internet access, 1995: 14. Mean number of computers with Internet access in schools with Internet access, 1995: 12.); Issues Brief: Internet Access in Public Schools, National Center for Education Statistics, US Department of Education (February 1998).

School
Characteristics
1994 1995 1996 1997
All Public Schools 35 50 65 78
Minority Enrollment
Less than 6 percent - 52 65 84
6 to 20 percent - 58 72 87
21 to 49 percent - 54 65 73
50 percent or more - 40 56 63
Students eligible for free or
reduced-price lunch
Less than 11 percent - 62 78 88
11 to 30 percent - 59 72 83
21 to 70 percent - 47 58 78
71 Percent or more - 31 53 63

Source: Issues Brief: Internet Access in Public Schools, National Center for Education Statistics, US Department of Education (February 1998).

"How do we make sure this revolution in communications helps people not just in Montgomery County but also in downtown Baltimore? Because, let's face it. That's not happening right now. Not when 78% of schools in affluent communities have Internet access -- but only half the schools in low-income areas have access. Not when the percentage of white children with home computers is trible the percentage of black and Latino kids. This is what I call the digital divide. . . . But today, only 5% of minority classrooms are hooked up to the Internet." William E. Kennard, Bridging the Digital Divide (May 15, 1998).

Students per Computer

"The average ration of students to computers is now 7.3-to-1, compared with 25-to-1 a decade ago. The U.S. Education Department has a 5-to-1 goal." - Schools struggle to train teachers to use technology, USA Today 2D (December 17, 1997)

"In the 1993-94 school year, for instance, schools where 80 percent or more of their students were eligible for Title I had one computer for every 26 students, while schools where just 20 percent of students were eligible for Title I had one computer for every 13 students, according to Quality Education Data. But by the 1995-96 school year the gap had narrowed substantially, with the poorest schools reporting one computer for every 13 students, and the wealthiest one of every 10 students." -- The Benton Foundation, The Learning Connection: Schools in the Information Age, An Education Technology Agenda (Last updated 10 September 1997).

Students per computer. 91-92 (19.2); 92-93 (12); 93-94 (10.8); 94-95 (9.1); 95-96 (9); 96-97 (7.3). Techno-Savvy schools, USA Today 4D December 17, 1887 (Source: Market Data Retrieval Inc).

"The ratio of students per computer declined from 36.5 a decade ago to 19.3 five years ago and 7.3 in the last school year." The boom goes on - and so do the inequities, electronic school A12 September 1997 (Source: Technology in Education: Advance Report")

"However the study shows, schools with low minority enrollments have more computers available for their students. Schools with less than 5 percent minorities have a ration of 6.6 students per computer; those where more than half the students are minorities have a ratio of 8.4 students per computer. . . Similarly, while Internet access in schools has gone up, the lion's share of the access is in wealthier schools, the study discovered. The percentage of schools with Internet access went from 32 percent in 1995-96 to 70 percent last year. ¶ In affluent neighborhoods, the figure is 78 percent, compared with 69 percent for blue-collar neighborhoods and 66 percent in rural areas. Among schools with less than 5 percent minority enrollment, 72 percent have Internet access, compared with only 65 percent of the schools with more than 50 percent minorities." - The boom goes on - and so do the inequities, electronic school A12 September 1997 (Source: Technology in Education: Advance Report")

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