Program provides devices, internet access and more to expand technology skills
October 16, 2020 – Six middle schools in Jefferson County Public Schools (JCPS) today kicked off their participation in the Verizon Innovative Learning program, which fosters digital inclusion by ensuring the benefits of technology are realized by all. Under the initiative, students and teachers will receive 4,772 devices, 24/7 internet access, and tech-based education resources through Verizon Innovative Learning’s partnership with Digital Promise.
JCPS Superintendent Dr. Marty Pollio announced the launch of the program at Carrithers Middle School, as students picked up take-home devices with internet access that they can use during remote learning and when schools eventually resume in-person classes.
“The virtual learning environment we have been in for most of this year has required us to find many ways to meet the technology needs of our students,” Pollio said. “We want to be a district where every student has a take-home device on a permanent basis. This investment by Verizon brings us that much closer to becoming a 1-to-1 school district.”
In addition to Carrithers, five other JCPS middle schools are entering the program in the 2020-21 school year: Grace James Academy of Excellence, Conway Middle School, Farnsley Middle School, Robert Frost Sixth Grade Academy and Stuart Academy Middle School. They join Newburg Middle School, Lassiter Middle School, The Academy @ Shawnee Middle School, W.E.B. DuBois Academy and Frederick Law Olmsted Academy North, which all became part of the Verizon Innovative Learning program in 2018.
Verizon, through the Verizon Innovative Learning program and in partnership with Digital Promise, provides free technology, free internet access, and experiential learning options to help give under-resourced students the tech, education and opportunity they deserve. The program keeps students connected while supporting distance learning from home, the classroom or in blended-learning models.
“At Carrithers, our mission is to increase the achievement and growth of every student through effective and engaging teaching and learning strategies,” said Carrithers Principal Dr. Denise Franklin-Williams. “We are excited for all of the opportunities that will be available to our students and teachers to help us achieve this mission, as a result of Verizon investing in our school this way.”
Since 2012, the Verizon Innovative Learning program has provided more than $535 million in market value to support STEM education nationwide, helping students learn by infusing tech into curriculum. The market value of the Verizon Innovative Learning program’s donations to school districts is, on average, $1.8 million per school.