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Indianapolis E-Learning Fund to help schools

INDIANAPOLIS (Inside INdiana Business) — Indianapolis public school districts and public charter schools will receive much-needed aid from the Indianapolis E-Learning Fund. The advisory committee for the fund approved the release of $1.5 million to help schools with their most urgent needs, which were determined to be device and internet connectivity for students and families. 

Marion County teachers found a lack of devices and connection to the internet as the biggest roadblocks to establishing successful e-learning programs in a needs assessment done by the Office of Education Innovation and The Mind Trust. Educators completing the survey reported over 25 % of students did not have access to high-speed internet and tens of thousands of students lacked laptops, tablets and mobile hotspots to allow them to participate in e-learning. 

“We know schools are working around the clock to ensure students have opportunities to learn during this difficult time, and we’re proud we can do something to help them in that effort,” said Mayor Joe Hogsett. “I appreciate the collaboration between advisory committee members, local school leaders, our funders and partners from the philanthropic and business communities that made this possible.”

Funding will be allocated based on student population size and state data on how many students qualify free and reduced lunches. Distributions will be made directly to school districts and charter school allocations will be coordinated by The Mind Trust. The rest of the fund contributions will be directed to longer-term investments for schools to engage in e-learning statewide.