Top challenge for educators during remote learning is student internet access, survey finds

Published: April 15th, 2021

Student internet access was the top challenge faced by educators during the shift to remote learning, with 68% reporting it as an issue in Promethean’s Australia State of Technology in Education Report 2021.

Pioneered by Promethean,  the State of Technology in Education Report 2021 draws on two national edtech surveys that ran before and during the pandemic*. Available for download now, the full report highlights findings such as:

  • 60% of teachers believe that students learn best in the classroom.
  • 74% of respondents identified technology as a priority in their school strategy, compared to 66% the previous year.
  • 58% of teachers stated that they were available for contact outside of teaching hours, compared to just 14% the year before.

The survey of educators explored the role technology currently plays in today’s K-12 schools, especially considering the new education realities stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic.

The latest survey gave educators the opportunity to share their experiences of key challenges such as student internet access in more detail. One respondent, a classroom teacher at a public primary school in Queensland, explained: “In rural schools, poor bandwidth issues are the main barrier to using more online pedagogies.”

Similarly, a Head of Department at a public secondary school in South Australia stated, “Working with the students online was fine, but a number couldn’t connect and thus missed out.”

Gene Ng, Head of APAC and ANZ at Promethean, commented: “Our new State of Technology in Education Report has shone a light on issues surrounding equitable access to edtech. Student internet access has been a major challenge for educators over the past year, highlighting beyond any doubt the digital divide in Australia. With remote learning only ever introduced as a temporary measure, it’s important we learn from insights such as these. It is clearer than ever that students are social learners, and on top of that, teachers believe students learn best in the classroom. Going forward, we believe that schools will benefit from technology strategies that primarily support classroom-based learning but can also facilitate learning from home.”

As the only report of its kind in the country, the State of Technology in Education Report provides unique insight into how technology is being used in the classroom, as well as wider successes and challenges within the sector. As an education technology company, we believe that we have a responsibility to help map out what educators really need and deliver those solutions. The new report is just part of that, and we will continue to seek new ways to support schools and teachers effectively.

Download now your free copy of the State of Technology in Education Report 2021.

*The State of Technology in Education surveys ran between June to September in 2019 and September to December in 2020.