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Assessing Claims of ConnectED Progress in ‘Year of Action’

In his 2014 State of the Union, President Obama said that 2014 would be a “year of action” to ensure opportunity for all Americans. On July 10, the White House released an update on progress toward that pledge, including on the Administration’s ConnectED initiative. Here’s the relevant page from the report published by the White House:

Screen Shot 2014-07-13 at 9.46.53 AM

While a number of White House claims in this report of ConnectED progress may strike readers as Pollyannaish, it sure looks to me like the White House has a math problem in at least double counting $2 billion of new public and private support for digital learning tools and services and its likely impact on students and educators. At the same time, its not surprising to see the omission of updates on the status of prospects for the ConnectEDucators program, which has seen a rocky reception on Capitol Hill.

We at SETDA remain committed to working with the Obama Administration, the FCC, and the U.S. Congress (and in partnership with like-minded organizations) to ensure that the needs identified in the launch of the ConnectED Initiative are addressed meaningfully and comprehensively.

Inflated claims of progress simply underscore the work still before us.

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