MPS Foundation launches $1 million fundraising campaign to provide families with internet access

Will match district's $1 million investment

By Lauren Anderson -Jun 3, 2020 11:21 am

The Milwaukee Public Schools Foundation, Inc. has launched a $1 million fundraising campaign to provide internet access for students and their families.  

As the district has shifted to remote learning during the COVID-19 pandemic, the foundation said it has exacerbated the digital divide between those who have internet access at home and those who do not.

The MPS Foundation is seeking to raise $1 million as phase one of its #ConnectMilwaukee campaign, which will match MPS’s $1 million investment in the effort. In total, the foundation and district plan to allocate $2 million to provide mobile internet access for more than 5,000 students for a year.

The first phase of the campaign will focus on MPS’s homeless student population and other families that do not have access to the internet. 

“Internet connectivity for our students has been inequitable and unequal. While a large number of us have transitioned to working from home or helping our family members navigate online learning, many parents and families cannot make this shift as easily,” said Wendell Willis, executive director of the MPS Foundation. “For those of you sitting at home wondering how you can help, this is the moment. This is your opportunity to directly serve the underserved. Internet access and bridging the digital divide is vital for everyone’s routine daily tasks and we are committed to helping our students have the access they deserve.”

The second phase of the campaign will work with MPS and more than 100 schools to identify needs for online learning including teacher technology education and training, technological enablement grants, and community technology usage support.