How Illinois is Fighting the Tech Battle

The state of Illinois is no stranger to the tech industry In fact, it’s one of the leading states in the country when it comes to tech innovation. But with the ever-changing landscape of the tech industry the state has to continuously adapt in order to stay ahead of the curve.

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The Problem

The Digital Divide

The digital divide is the gap between those who have access to technology and those who do not. In Illinois, this issue is particularly acute in rural areas, where many residents do not have access to high-speed internet. This lack of access can limit opportunities for education, job training, and economic development.

In an effort to close the digital divide, the state of Illinois has investe

The Homework Gap

In today’s world, students need to be able to use technology for homework and research. However, many students do not have access to a computer or the internet at home. This is known as the homework gap.

According to a recent study, nearly 60% of Illinois students do not have reliable access to a computer or the internet at home. That means 6 out of every 10 students in our state are at a disadvantage when it comes to doing their homework.

The homework gap is especially pronounced among low-income and rural students. But it affects students of all backgrounds. Even in affluent suburbs, there are often students who do not have access to a home computer or broadband internet.

The good news is that Illinois is working hard to close the homework gap. We have been working with schools, libraries, and other organizations to provide free or low-cost computer and internet access to students across the state. In addition, we have been working with companies like Comcast and AT&T to provide low-cost broadband internet service to families who need it.

We are making progress, but there is still more work to be done. We need your help to close the homework gap in Illinois!

The Solution

The state of Illinois has been working on a solution to the tech exodus for a while now. Their solution is two-fold: first, they are working on building up the infrastructure in the state to make it more appealing to tech companies Secondly, they are working on a talent pipeline, which will help to funnel talent into the state.

The Broadband Infrastructure Grant Program

The Broadband Infrastructure Grant Program is a $500 million investment by the State of Illinois to expand broadband access across the state. The goal of the program is to provide high-speed internet access to all of Illinois’ residents, businesses, and anchor institutions by 2025.

The program will provide grants to private companies, local government entities, and non-profit organizations to build or upgrade broadband infrastructure in unserved and underserved areas of the state. All projects must meet certain criteria in order to be eligible for funding, including a commitment to providing broadband access to all residents, businesses, and anchor institutions within the project area.

The Broadband Infrastructure Grant Program is an important part of the state’s efforts to close the digital divide and ensure that all of Illinois’ residents have equal access to the economic opportunities that broadband can provide.

The Illinois Learning Technology Purchase Program

In order to get more students using laptops and tablets in the classroom, the state of Illinois appropriated $50 million for a new Learning Technology Purchase Program. This program provides grants to schools so that they can purchase devices for their students. In order to be eligible, schools must agree to provide training for teachers on how to use the devices in instruction and implement a 1:1 device ratio in at least one grade level.

So far, the program has been successful in getting more devices into the hands of students. In the first year of the program, nearly 37,000 devices were purchased by participating schools. The majority of these were laptops, but 2,700 were tablets. The state is hoping to increase these numbers in the coming years so that all students have access to technology in the classroom.

The Results

Illinois is losing the tech battle. Although the state offers tax breaks and other incentives to keep companies from leaving, the number of tech jobs in Illinois has been declining for years. In 2017, the state had the second-highest number of tech jobs in the country. However, by 2019, it had fallen to fifth.

Increased Access to Technology

The number of devices available to students in the Illinois pilot program increased from an average of 2.3 devices per 1,000 students in the 2015-16 school year to 4.3 devices per 1,000 students in the 2016-17 school year — a 86 percent increase.

The number of students with access to high-speed broadband internet at home increased from 31 percent in the 2015-16 school year to 63 percent in the 2016-17 school year — a 102 percent increase.

Improved Student Achievement

According to a study by the Illinois State Board of Education, the use of technology in the classroom has led to improved student achievement. The study found that students who had access to technology in the classroom scored higher on standardized tests than those who did not have access to technology. In addition, the study found that students who used technology in the classroom were more likely to be engaged in the learning process and were more likely to be motivated to learn.

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