DDI builds bridges to opportunity by bringing technology to underserved populations. The PEC gives parents skills to help their students.

While access is becoming more available in public places such as libraries and community technology centers, computers in the home and internet access is significantly lower for underserved populations: minorities, low-income households, people with disabilities, older people, and people without higher degrees.

The Digital Divide Initiative (DDI) provides its participants with the technological skills and knowledge they need to succeed in an increasingly digital world with a focus on putting technology in their home.

The DDI Parent Empowerment Center (PEC) at Phyllis Wheatley helps parents become better learning partners, creates powerful connections between home and school, and provides engaging educational opportunities for the entire family.

Parents have a huge effect on their children's attitudes about and success in school. According to the National Education Service, when parents are involved, students tend to achieve more, regardless of socio-economic status, ethnic or racial background, or parents own educational level. When parents are involved, students generally have higher test scores, better attendance, consistent homework completion, and higher graduation rates than children whose parents are not actively engaged.

The PEC provides workshops and access to technology for family members & primary caregivers to learn the computer skills and to understand curriculum and software needed to support their students. Topics and services include:

  • Internet Safety
  • Computer basics
  • Understanding curriculum
  • Topical workshops (participant defined)
  • Goal setting
  • Access to good quality low-cost computers
  • Access to affordable technical support
  • Access to affordable internet service
  • Access to low-cost educational software
  • Community Service opportunities

Software programs available for use at the PEC include KidSmart Early Learning & Technology, Reading Companion, and Try Science (all from IBM). We also use CFY educational software titles to support K-12 math, literacy, social studies and science curriculums.

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