“The people have a right to the privilege of education, and it is the duty of the state to guard and maintain that right.”
~Constitution of North Carolina, Article I, Sec. 15
Every state in the nation has an educational mandate. Some states, like North Carolina, go a step further and enshrine it as a fundamental right. Students in North Carolina have a fundamental right to a “sound, basic education.” What exactly does this sound, basic education look like in our new COVID-19 world? Regardless of where you stand on the issue of quarantining, the reality is we are going to see a very different educational landscape for the foreseeable future. District leaders here in NC and throughout the country are preparing for additional closings next year and periods of “remote learning.” Aside from the instructional challenges for educators, there are real material challenges for students in a remote learning environment. Without access to high quality, reliable broadband service, it is impossible to even begin to address these challenges. As a result, children throughout North Carolina (and the nation) are falling and will continue to fall further behind those with adequate resources.