Luján Holds Virtual Roundtable To Highlight Need to Close Homework Gap in New Mexico
One in four New Mexico students lack access to reliable high-speed internet
Nambé, N.M. – Today, Senator Ben Ray Luján (D-N.M.) held a virtual roundtable with members of New Mexico’s Homework Gap Team to discuss how to close the digital divide for the one in four New Mexico students who lack access to high-speed internet. During the event, Senator Luján highlighted his continued efforts to expand broadband access and asked panelists how he could support their work from the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation.
“Prior to COVID-19, New Mexico’s students already faced a digital divide, and the COVID-19 pandemic has only exacerbated existing disparities,” said Senator Luján. “Currently, a quarter of New Mexico students don’t have access to high-speed internet. In some New Mexico border and Tribal communities, that number is as high as 1 out every 2 students lacking internet at home.”
“I’m grateful for the efforts of the Homework Gap Team, whose members are educators as well as state and national experts on broadband connectivity. I look forward to continuing to work with them as a member of the Senate Commerce Committee, and to lifting up their insights as the Senate puts forth the upcoming COVID-19 relief package,” he continued.
The Homework Gap Team is a collective action initiative focused on providing hotspots and devices to homebound students and led by New Mexico Public Education Department (PED) in partnership with NM Indian Affairs Department (IAD), Public Schools Facility Authority (PSFA), Department of Information Technology (DoIT), Department of Cultural Affairs (DCA) and State Library, Santa Fe Indian School (SFIS), Navajo Nation, Community Advocacy, Community Learning Network (CLN), and more.