Gathering inventory: Utah Education Network asks school districts to track technology in classrooms
Salt Lake City, Utah (October 5, 2023) – The Utah Education Network (UEN), in partnership with Connected Nation (CN), has launched a new portal to inventory technology within Utah’s public and charter schools. In 2015, UEN began tracking how technology is used in classrooms and the access teachers and students have to digital materials, devices and platforms.
“I believe the Utah Education Network’s statewide Digital and Teaching Learning (DTL) inventory is the only comprehensive K-12 technology inventory in the nation that includes longitudinal data for the past eight years,” said Jeff Egly, Associate Director, UEN. “This level of detail acts as a map and compass, providing data that illustrates trends, tracks improvements and shows growth to inform and guide.”
In 2021, Connected Nation worked with UEN to collect more than 80,000 new data points across 1,037 public schools in the state. The inventory found that Utah’s educational institutions have increased the number of devices per student. More than 888,800 computing devices are available to more than 675,500 Utah students. The 2021 inventory also found that nearly 2 out of 5 schools (39%) have deployed mobile computing devices on a 1:1 basis, allowing students to take devices home.
“Utah’s Local Education Agencies (LEAs) have the ability to use this inventory data to more effectively make decisions relating to how technology is enhancing and supporting education,” said Cory Stokes, Senior Project Manager for UEN.
Over the past several years, it became apparent how important it is to track technology in Utah schools and understand solutions for continuing education despite unexpected obstacles.
“As a nonprofit, we have worked for nearly two decades to find and implement innovative solutions to expand access to broadband and its related technologies to more families and communities,” said Tom Ferree, Chairman and CEO of Connected Nation. “Connecting our schools and, ultimately, more students is a critical part of our mission. UEN is taking the necessary steps to identify ways to help all of Utah’s students, and we are excited to once again partner with them this year.”
School administrators and teachers are encouraged to take part in the current inventory by visiting https://techinventory.uen.org/.
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About the Utah Education Network: UEN is part of the Utah Education and Telehealth Network (UETN) which connects all Utah school districts, schools, and higher education institutions to a robust network and quality educational resources. UEN is one of the nation's premier education networks.
About Connected Nation: The national nonprofit’s mission is to improve lives by providing innovative solutions that expand access, adoption and use of high-speed internet and its related technology to all people. Everyone belongs in a Connected Nation.
Connected Nation works with consumers, local community leaders, states, technology providers and foundations to develop and implement technology expansion programs with core competencies centered on a mission to improve digital inclusion for people and places previously underserved or overlooked. For more information, please visit: connectednation.org.