All In WA Digital Equity Initiative
School districts across Washington faced a variety of challenges when pivoting to online education and remote learning necessitated by COVID-19. Lack of digital access disproportionately impacted families with low income, especially Black, Indigenous, and communities of color across our state.
Under the All In WA campaign, the Digital Equity Initiative focused on closing the digital divide and supporting academic achievement by quickly providing students with access to devices and hardware, hot spots, and tech support. See our collective impact here.
The Digital Equity Initiativeprovided critical resources to close the digital divide and support remote learning across Washington state.
ABOUT THE DIGITAL EQUITY INITIATIVE
The Digital Equity Initiative worked closely with the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) and other government partners. Using federal CARES ACT funds, OSPI made available almost $9 million to provide access to broadband to low-income students across Washington.
The Digital Equity Initiative focused on supplementing those dollars to fill gaps, focusing on:
- Hardware and devices
- Access to hot spots (where broadband isn’t available)
- Tech support
- Support for community-based organizations that work closely with students & families to get
We partnered with InvestED and its infrastructure and networks needed to quickly distribute resources to students and families most in need. InvestED acted as a statewide intermediary, providing critical funding to school districts and local school-based foundations.
The Digital Equity Initiative was an example of a critical partnership with the private sector, state government (including Native communities), and philanthropy. All In WA also partnered with internet and tech providers, many of whom provided discounted or free services and devices.