Systems limitations hamper integration of accessible information technology in northwest US K-12 schools

Jennifer P. Wisdom, Nathan White, Kimberley Goldsmith, Sarann Bielavitz, Amy Rees, Charles Davis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Although federal U. S. regulations require schools to provide equal access to educational opportunities for all students, many technologies used in K-12 schools present accessibility barriers for students with disabilities. Interviews assessed knowledge of educational department staff, teachers, and parents of children in K-12 schools in the Pacific Northwest U. S. regarding accessible electronic and information technology, barriers to technology access, and the capacity of these school systems to address information technology (IT) accessibility issues. Results indicate staff and parents have some basic knowledge of IT accessibility issues, but significant barriers remain regarding appropriate implementation of accessible IT within Northwest K-12 schools. These schools continue to address information technology accessibility on a case-by-case basis, rather than making systemic improvements to the accessibility of technology for all students. Systemic barriers exist regarding system-wide policies of accessibility, a lack of funds for training and implementation, and lack of communication between educators, administrators, IT staff and parents. Recommendations for improving services are provided.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)222-232
Number of pages11
JournalEducational Technology & Society
Volume10
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2007

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