Henry C. Lea Elementary and the Digital Divide

In many classrooms, white boards have pushed aside chalkboards, and most kids do research on the Internet instead of trekking to the library to look at the World Book Encyclopedia.

Here, West Philadelphia Schools activist Amara Rockar writes about Henry C. Lea Elementary, where students and teachers are trying to raise money for computers. About 90 percent of the children there, Rockar writes, are economically disadvantaged and don't have computers at home, either, putting them at risk of falling behind in real-world skills.

The technology vacuum at Lea, Rockar says, stands in contrast to "leafy Locust Walk with its sleek buildings filled with cutting-edge technologies" at nearby University of Pennsylvania.