GCRI members Rhode Island Foundation and CVS Health led almost 70 donors in support of Rhode Island Department of Education’s (RIDE) Distance Learning Initiative. RIDE estimates that the more than $400,000 raised will fund the purchase of approximately 400 hotspots and 1,200 computers to close technology gaps for students and families.
Rhode Island Foundation made an initial challenge donation to the initiative of $100,000. CVS Health donated $150,000 to enable the Woonsocket Education Department to purchase 750 Chromebook laptops for students in grades three through five. The assistance will round out the effort to ensure that every Pre-K through grade 12 student in the district has access to technology for remote learning during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Statewide, the majority of students are able to access Distance Learning opportunities using technology provided by local education agencies. However, RIDE has identified pockets of need in some school communities, including families with multiple students or households without access to internet connectivity. The donations will be distributed to those school communities or used directly to purchase Chromebooks and hotspots.
The Fund will continue to accept charitable contributions in any amount at rifoundation.org/RIEducation as long as the need continues.