But it is not just computers. Entire new lines of devices, such as tablets, e-readers and smartphones, have come to the market in recent years that also have no physical network connections. Restricting wifi means an entire generation of technology is not useable in classrooms.
Additionally, hard-wiring buildings with physical cables and establishing wired access points is expensive compared to installing WiFi access points.
However, there are also teaching and learning implications to choosing wired vs. wireless access. Wired only computer access restricts internet access to specific physical locations. In many schools, the only place where you have internet access is in a specified room – the computer lab. While this might have been an economical and even pedagogically sound learning environment 20 years ago, it is not today. Increasingly, both the internet and mobile devices are being used by teachers inside the classroom, with studies showing that up to 73% of teachers are using mobile devices for teaching and learning purposes. Wired networks were great 20 years ago, but are as adequate for contemporary teaching and learning as slate and chalk. Sure, they work. But is that really the best learning environment we can provide for our children?