100 Low-income Students Receive Free Laptops
SAHUARITA, Az - One hundred students at Wrightson Ridge K-8 School in Sahuarita received free Chromebook computers January 27, 2023 at a ceremony at the school. The computers, provided by Phoenix-based non-profit Laptops 4 Learning, are going to students whose families cannot otherwise afford them. The 100 donations were made possible by grants from Americans Helping Americans and the Arizona Women’s Partnership.
At the event students, received their computers, posed for photos, and took the Laptops 4 Learning pledge to use the laptop to become better students, to get their homework done, and to raise their grades. Wrightson Ridge is a Title 1 school, which means more than 40% of its students qualify for free or reduced-price lunch. “Many of these families receiving Chromebooks have multiple children and are not able to afford even one computer for the home, let alone one for each child,” said Brenda Powell, executive director of the Phoenix-based charity. “Although Laptops 4 Learning is a Phoenix-based organization, we also seek out and target lower-income schools in rural communities,” said Powell. “Many rural schools tend to be overlooked by the large corporate giving programs.” Powell read from letters written by the families of device recipients. “Having a Chromebook would really help to get school work done. We have six kids in our house (all sharing a single laptop) and we all cannot just use one laptop.” Another letter said “I would be able to do my iReady work for school and homework. It would help me for my reading and math homework also. Right now I am not able to do that. We don’t have anything that is compatible with my school.” A 2021 report by Common Sense Media found that 220,544 Arizona students lack tech devices at home to support online learning. About 56% of these students are Native American, Latin American, or Black.
“Our goal with this computer device giveaway is to support families with needed laptop technology to help their children succeed in school,” Powell said. “This is how we help close the digital technology gap, one student at a time.” “A lot of our students struggle to get their work done at home. COVID really highlighted that problem, but it’s not like that problem went away when we came back into the classroom,” said Nerissa Patrone, elementary school counselor for Wrighton Ridge. Added Gabriela Costa, Wrighton Ridge’s middle school counselor, “when they are not able to complete their homework, that affects their grades at school. This is a problem that builds up and grows over time. These donations are a huge help and we thank the donors from the bottom of our hearts.” About Laptops 4 Learning: Laptops 4 Learning (L4L) is a nonprofit 501(c) (3) organization, created to make technology affordable and available, by putting laptops in the hands of socio-economically disadvantaged school children. We recognize the negative societal impact inadequate access to computer technology is having, especially for students living in low-moderate income families. If you would like to help L4L help even greater numbers of students needing laptops, please go online to www.laptops4learning.com and click on the “Get Involved” tab. Tax ID# 81-2833038.