Photo credit: CityofStPete

Keep Our Kids Connected

Introducing the Student Internet Equity Program

With each day that passes during this pandemic, achievement gaps grow wider for our nation’s students who do not have access to high-speed Internet or devices for distance learning.

For those students who have gotten connected during the pandemic – especially the low-income, students of color, rural and students living on tribal lands – we must ensure they do not lose access once schools return to classroom learning. 

We must make education equitable for the millions of middle and high school students who lack access to these vital learning tools.

This should be national policy.

We can do this through the Student Internet Equity Coalition.  The Coalition is a national effort to advocate for The Student Internet Equity Program.  We are bringing together policy makers, advocates, educators, and business leaders to work together towards this critical mission.

The Student Internet Equity Program would provide high quality subsidized and discounted Internet and computer access for middle and high school students, under a shared cost formula spread between providers, families, and ultimately relying on the federal government to step up and lead. Government would subsidize the program for families that qualify for free and reduced meals and low-income families meeting income guidelines.  Student rates would be available to all other households where a middle or high school student resides.

Our kids need us to act now.

Sign up here to receive more information on the Student Internet Equity Coalition.

TheStudentInternetEquity Coalition founder, Donna Rattley Washington, knew a more scalable solution was desperately needed for delivering online learning support to all students – especially in light of COVID-19. She heard stories from mothers who were attempting to solve this problem with only a disjointed patchwork of solutions, and she knew there had to be a more effective approach. As a former law partner, cable system General Manager, board chair and interim CEO of Edbuild, as well as a board member of City Year Washington, DC, Donna had traversed a 20-year leadership journey spanning education, digital adoption, legislative affairs, management, and telecommunications. Her background was a perfect fit for tackling this complex issue, and she was unwilling to sit back and do nothing in the face of such a huge opportunity chasm—one that poses a significant threat to educational equality.