Mission Accomplished: The Classroom Connectivity Gap Is Now Closed

New Report Shows 99% of All K-12 School Districts in the U.S. Now Have Access to High-Speed Internet

SAN FRANCISCO – Today, EducationSuperHighway released its annual State of the States report, highlighting the completion of its mission to close the K-12 classroom connectivity gap. Ninety-nine percent of America’s schools now have high-speed broadband connections capable of providing enough bandwidth to enable their students and teachers to use technology in the classroom.

The report emphasizes that this success is due to the collaborative effort of governors in all 50 states along with federal policymakers, service providers and school districts. These key stakeholders came together with the common goal of increasing bandwidth to allow students to truly take advantage of the educational possibilities that come with digital learning, and the progress is already paying off – 93 percent of school districts are using digital learning in at least half of their classrooms every week and 85 percent of teachers and principals support the increased use of digital learning in their schools.

“By closing the digital divide in the classroom, we’re opening the door to new educational opportunities for millions of students across the nation,” said Evan Marwell, Founder and CEO at EducationSuperHighway. “Digital learning isn’t just a promise anymore — now, it’s a reality.”

In today’s technology-driven world, access to high-speed broadband is critical in every classroom. The progress evidenced in this report means that students across the nation will now have the tools to prepare for — and to compete in — the workforce of tomorrow.

“EducationSuperHighway is exactly the kind of non-profit that Salesforce and I are enthusiastic to support,” said Marc Benioff, Chairman and co-CEO, Salesforce. “We’re proud to celebrate the achievement of this bold mission and its tremendous impact on our education system.”

“Our work is aimed at ensuring that every student – not just a lucky few – gets an education that’s tailored to their needs and supports every aspect of their development,” said Priscilla Chan, co-Founder and co-CEO of the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, one of the funders of EducationSuperHighway. “Thanks to the tremendous work of EducationSuperHighway to equip schools with high-speed broadband, more students and teachers across the country will be able to access the tools and technology that will help achieve this goal.”

Highlights from the 2019 State of the States report include:

  • The number of students who have access to broadband at the FCC’s original goal of 100kbps per student has increased from 4 million in 2013 to 46.3 million today.
  • The cost of Internet access for schools has declined 90 percent since 2013.
  • Since 2015, school districts have invested nearly $5 billion in K-12 Wi-Fi networks.
  • Ninety-nine percent of America’s K-12 public schools have the fiber-optic connections needed to meet future connectivity needs.
  • Over five years, eighty-one governors in all 50 states joined the effort to close the classroom connectivity gap.

The State of the States report also urges state leaders to ensure that districts don’t miss opportunities to continue to upgrade connectivity in schools in order to drive innovation in K-12 classrooms.

“Evan founded EducationSuperHighway with a powerful and improbable dream — connecting every classroom in the country to high-speed Internet. With today’s announcement, that dream is nearly a reality,” said Laurene Powell Jobs, Founder and President of Emerson Collective, which is one of the funders of EducationSuperHighway. “EducationSuperHighway is helping bridge America’s digital divide, ensuring that no child is at a disadvantage because they can’t access the world’s knowledge.”
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“EducationSuperHighway is a huge public, private and nonprofit success story. I’m so proud of Evan and the team for its bi-partisan accomplishments,” said Jonathan Kaplan, Board Chairperson, EducationSuperHighway. “However, this important work is never truly done. We urge state leaders to continue working to ensure their schools are keeping up with technological advances and ensuring our kids are well prepared for the future.”

“This movement has been more rewarding than we ever could have imagined,” said Marwell. “By leveraging data and bringing together key stakeholders, we drove home the change that our communities craved — and students across the nation are better off because of it. I can’t wait to see everything this next generation achieves with the tools that are now right at their fingertips.”

To learn more, visit the full report here: stateofthestates.educationsuperhighway.org

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About State of the States Report
The State of the States report tracks progress toward the K-12 connectivity goals established by the Federal Communications Commission and provides state leaders with the information needed to finish the job of connecting America’s students to high-speed broadband. The report, published annually, is based on publicly available E-rate data.

About EducationSuperHighway
EducationSuperHighway was founded in 2012 with the mission of upgrading the Internet access in every public school classroom in America. The organization took on this mission because it believes that digital learning has the potential to provide all students with equal access to educational opportunity and that every school requires high-speed broadband to make that opportunity a reality. EducationSuperHighway is funded by national philanthropic organizations including the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the Salesforce Foundation and our mission is supported by governors in all 50 states and America’s leading CEOs. Having completed its mission, EducationSuperHighway will sunset August 2020.