WINDOW ROCK, AZ – During a regular meeting of the Health, Education, and Human Services Standing Committee (HEHSC), representatives from the Arizona Department of Education (ADE) presented the Ganado Unified School District (GUSD) with tablets to assist second and third grade students who do not have internet access.
Vince R. James, HEHSC Chair Delegate, said that the Amazon Fire tablets were preloaded with GUSD curriculum content and were only being provided to children who had no access to broadband or the internet.
“This came about when the school indicated that students were failing because they had no access to the internet or broadband,” said James. “We are trying to reach out and assist these families.”
Dr. Leandra Thomas, GUSD Interim Superintendent, said that the pandemic exasperated the disparities that existed between students who had broadband and those who did not.
“Everything we are doing is for the best interest of our students,” said Thomas. “During the pandemic, GUSD and the surrounding schools were impacted to where we had to react fast and try to provide services to students that didn’t have the internet. To this day, we still have families that are in need who don’t have broadband.”
GUSD Primary and Intermediate Principal Corrina Begay expressed gratitude to ADE for supporting the students who needed these resources.
“We have plenty of little ones who don’t have internet access,” said Begay. “Our third grade students need to be at the state level, and we expect them to be fully functional at that level. Yet, we still have students who are not performing at the third grade level. I’m grateful for this opportunity to get these tablets. I’m thankful and I hope this really helps our children.”