By Kathy Chouteau
Apple iPads and data plans are headed to Stege Elementary thanks to a $30,000 donation by Chevron and the Oakland A’s Community Fund to support distance learning in the West Contra Costa Unified School District (WCCUSD) during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The donation, facilitated by the West Contra Costa Public Education Fund (Ed Fund) on behalf of the WCCUSD, will cover the cost of an Apple CDE plan—a.k.a. data plans—for more than 250 K-6 grade students along with iPads at the Richmond school over a one-year period, according to Lily Rahnema, community engagement manager at Chevron Richmond.
Tracey Logan, the WCCUSD’s chief technology officer, said the donation “will enable all of our Stege students to reliably connect to the internet on their new 4G LTE-enabled iPads with unlimited high speed 4G LTE data from home for distance learning for the remainder of this school year and into next.”
Located at 4949 Cypress Ave., Stege became an Apple school in 2014 and is currently the only school in the district with the technology. The school is slated to undergo a redesign with new curriculum and instructional materials. As part of this effort, Stege teachers are rolling out a new Zearn Math curriculum that integrates with the school’s technology, while also facilitating innovative distance learning options should distance learning continue next year.
“The school is also the pilot model for future schools redesigns, and it was important for Chevron that this donation supports efforts to provide students with cutting edge learning tools,” said Rahnema.
According to EdSource, Stege was chosen for the redesign last year due to facing “a wide range of challenges, including low academic performance and a high suspension rate.” Most of the students enrolled are primarily low-income, black and Latino students and approximately 40 percent of students were chronically absent last year.
During the pandemic, these students have been particularly impacted by the digital divide.
The donation is part of the A’s Community Fund, which Chevron is the founding partner.
“Chevron is proud to partner with the Oakland A’s to inspire the next generation of problem solvers by supporting STEM education and the A’s Community Fund,” said Paige Millard, partnership marketing specialist at Chevron. “By providing the needed technology for students to safely learn at home, it’s our hope that Richmond students will have the resources to be successful during 2020 and beyond.”
To join Chevron Richmond in donating to support the COVID-19 School Closure Fund for WCCUSD Kids and Schools, click here or send a check payable to “The West Contra Costa Public Education Fund, memo: COVID-19 School Closure Fund,” 217C West Richmond Ave, Richmond, CA 94801. The Ed Fund is a nonprofit; tax ID #68-0005307.
Have questions about donating? Contact Robert Bunce, director of strategic partnerships at the Ed Fund at [email protected].