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A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
Offers clear, simple breakdowns of the problems pertaining to digital technology, access, and education in public schools.
There is a digital divide in public school education that is mostly fueled by economic privilege, and it is having negative consequences across the country.
Positive Role Models
Some high-ranking school officials are succeeding in closing the divide, others have not. Academically driven students featured.
Products & Purchases
The documentary is sponsored by Verizon.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Without a Net is a documentary that examines the unequal access to digital technology, connectivity, and education in America's public school system. It's informative and offers easy to understand explanations about the digital divide in schools and the short- and long-term consequences it is having on students and on the country. Verizon is a sponsor, and its logo appears at the beginning and the end of the film. The film is informative and relevant, but teens might need some prodding to watch.
Is It Any Good?
This informative but dry piece underscores the inequality that exists in America's public education system, and how the system is thus failing to prepare students for a digital future. It notes that students around the country, whether in cities, suburbs, or rural areas, are still unable to adequately access and use technology in schools and at home. It also highlights the devastating long-term impact this will have if it isn't addressed, including continued cycles of poverty and reduced competitiveness of Americans in a global digital economy.
It's not the most exciting of documentaries, but the detail it reveals on how starkly different the access to digital technology and education is among public schools districts is both interesting and frustrating. But some will disagree with some of the ways student needs are being defined, especially when it comes to re-envisioning the role of teachers in the classroom. Nonetheless, Without a Net succeeds at breaking down the digital deficiencies in public education, the reasons they developed, and the reasons the imbalance continues.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.