NEW YORK - With New York City returning to all-remote learning until further notice, an estimated 60,000 students still do not have devices like iPads to allow them to connect to remote learning.
The massive technology gap has many parents and officials slamming Mayor Bill de Blasio and the Department of Education for not being prepared to ensure every student has the tools they need for remote learning, despite the pandemic beginning eight months ago.
"The city did not plan responsibly," said City Councilman Mark Treyger.
Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza defended the city's response on Good Day New York, saying they had ordered another 100,000 of the devices but supply chain issues were preventing them from being delivered quickly.
"We along with every school system in the nation are ordering computers and iPads and laptops," Carranza said.
Carranza said 40,000 devices arrived this week and are being distributed to students. However, there is another complaint about the technology.
"We have high school kids who have shared with me that they cannot type an essay on an iPad," Treyger said. "And that is feedback they gave to their schools months ago. That is feedback that the schools gave to the DoE months ago. They knew, but they never took the time to order the right technology for our kids."
De Blasio has repeated that anyone who needs a new device or service simply needs to call 3-1-1.
However, over 24,000 New York City public school students live in shelters and do not have consistent WiFi or WiFi at all.
"It's not as easy as 'Call 3-1-1,' we know that there have been families that have been left behind," said Raysa Rodriguez of the Family Homelessness Coalition.
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