A previous version of this story said half of students in higher-income familes have access to the Internet at home. The Pew Report found half of teachers of higher-income families say that all or almost all of their students have access to the digital tools they need at home.
Technology has become essential to middle school and high school learning, but a gap in access to the Internet between the rich and poor is leading to troubling disparities in education, according to a survey of teachers.
Students depend strongly on the Web to find information and complete their assignments. The vast majority of teachers say they also rely on sites such as Wikipedia and social media to find teaching resources and materials, connect with other teachers and interact with parents, according to a survey released Thursday by the Pew Research Center.
The findings come as educators debate the role of technology in classrooms, which pose great advantages for students to research and find information. But three-quarters of teachers surveyed also said Google and other search engines have conditioned students to expect to find information quickly and easily and discourage children from using a wide range of sources for research, according to the report.