Last November, CTN partnered with Latinitas to provide a basic digital literacy class at Martin Middle School in Austin. The participants were parents and grandparents who use their smartphones for everything but were unable to access an important online tool, called BLEND, that the school uses to share grades, attendance, and assignments.
Ms. Herrera, the parent support specialist at Martin Middle School, identified 15 parents to participate in this pilot program, which provided basic digital skills training on AISD’s Parent Cloud and BLEND, their digital learning space. Upon completion of the 8-hour course, each participant received a refurbished laptop.
Additional resources were shared with the parents, including low-cost internet access, how to talk to their kids about online safety, and free online training resources. The long-term goal of the program is for parents and grandparents to better support their students for improved attendance and increased rates of homework completion.
We would like to thank the individual donors who provided financial support for this program. Also, Google Fiber and Collins Technology Fund provided grants that supported curriculum development and the purchase of computers. The City of Austin helped by donating new mice for each participant, and Rockstar bagels provided bagels for the learners on the first day.