Team Helps Provide 10,000 Chromebooks for School District of Philadelphia Students
PHILADELPHIA, March 30, 2020 — The Fund for the School District of Philadelphia announced today that Managing Partner Josh Harris, Co-Managing Partner David Blitzer and the Philadelphia 76ers have stepped up to fund the purchase of 10,000 computers to make distance learning possible for all students during the extended school closure due to the COVID-19 public health crisis.
"We are ecstatic to learn that the Sixers are helping our students get computers in their homes so they can continue to learn during what is an unprecedented time for all of us," said Superintendent William R. Hite, Jr., Ed.D. "Our hometown team has come through in such an amazing way, proving that they are the true MVPs. I know I speak for our students, families and staff when I thank them for their generosity.”
According to a 2019 School District survey, approximately half of the students in grades 3 through 12 had access to computers at home. The Sixers' gift will help level the playing field and ensure that all students who attend the 220 District-led public schools across Philadelphia have the tools they need to learn at home.
“Josh Harris, David Blitzer and the entire Sixers organization have been great partners to the District over the years with the team’s focus on supporting the youth in our region,” said Donna Frisby Greenwood, President & CEO of the Fund. “We’re impressed that they stepped up this quickly to help purchase the computers that are urgently needed for our students.”
To ensure all 120,000-plus public-school students have access to distance learning during this COVID-19 crisis that has closed schools, the District plans to buy additional Chromebooks to supplement the existing computers that are currently being repurposed for distribution.
The District’s Board of Education voted last week to authorize up to $11 million for the purchase of new computers. Support from outside sources to cover the costs of buying new computers will decrease the total amount needed from the District’s budget.
The Fund for the School District of Philadelphia is the recipient of donations for the District and partners with corporations, small businesses and individuals that want to support the public schools. The nonprofit works directly with the District to identify where the funds raised are most valuable.