April 17: Update from Governor's COVID-19 Learn From Home Task Force
Announcement of Districts to Receive Laptops in First Round of Device Distribution
Dear Members of the Media,
We want to begin today’s update from the Governor’s COVID-19 Learn From Home Task Force (LFHT) by expressing our gratitude to our donors - the Partnership for Connecticut, the Nooyi family, and Scholastic – for their commitment to ensuring every student has access to high-quality learning content at home. We especially thank all of our Alliance District superintendents and personnel for their responsiveness and cooperation as we work together in an expedient, and SAFE, way to get these critical resources into the hands of our students most in need.
Since last week’s progress report, we have several important updates to communicate regarding shipping and distribution of the Partnership’s gift of up to 60,000 laptops to high school students and the more than 185,000 high-quality Scholastic book packs by the Nooyi Family for PK-8 grade students. The LFHT has now reviewed and approved all Alliance District Laptop and Scholastic Applications and has planned for three rounds of delivery. This tiered process uses a thoughtful, formula-based approach that prioritizes equity, student need and safe distribution while balancing the desire to maximize distribution coverage to as many shipping sites as possible. Shipment of devices will be prioritized based on the extent of 1:1 access at the school level. Dell and Scholastic have been provided district contacts, final quantities, and shipping sites and both have begun to coordinate with districts on logistical details.
In regard to timing, we expect the 185,000 Scholastic book packs to arrive in about a week from today. The 60,000 laptops, which are being built with our input to ensure they arrive “out of the box” ready for students to open and use immediately, will be delivered as soon as they come off of the assembly line.
Prioritization of Laptop Shipment (Round 1)
The first wave of shipment of nearly 17,000 DELL laptops are expected to reach District Identified Shipping Sites in May (Date TBD). In order to maximize the number of districts (19) receiving laptops, the first round of shipment will be devoted to shipping sites where fewer than 60 percent of students have 1:1 devices (a full list of districts receiving laptops, including amounts can be viewed here). Sites where currently more than 60 percent of students are reported to have 1:1 devices will not receive a shipment in Round 1. These schools will receive half of the requested quantities in Round 2 (June) and half in Round 3 (July).
This staggered shipment plan provides devices to nearly three-quarters of all shipping sites (i.e. 71 percent) so we can get our students in greatest need connected as soon as possible. Specifically, for sites where fewer than 60 percent of students have already been provided district-issued 1:1 devices:
- Nearly 50 percent of all laptops delivered in Round 1 will get delivered to four major cities: Bridgeport, Hartford, New Haven, Waterbury (approximately 2,000 each).
- Sites with fewer than 200 total students will receive their full shipment in Round 1.
- Sites requesting more than 200 laptops will receive nearly 40 percent of original request in Round 1 with completion of request in Rounds 2 and 3.
- Shipping Site contacts will receive further communication directly from Dell as to the precise quantities and the estimated delivery dates.
- Dell will follow up with Shipping Site contacts regarding hours of operation, availability of loading dock, and other pertinent logistical details.
- Dell is contacting district IT contacts to coordinate a wide range of technical details.
Shipment of Scholastic Materials
The anticipated arrival of Scholastic book-packs is on or around April 23rd. Scholastic has started making contact with shipping sites to coordinate on delivery as well as hours of operation, availability of loading dock, and other pertinent logistical details.
- District shipping contacts have been asked to respond promptly to any requests from Scholastic.
- Scholastic quantities for districts were supplemented with student enrollments in “programs” including PK programs. As such, some districts will receive greater quantities of book-packs than originally anticipated.
When it comes to the delivery and distribution of these devices and book packs, the LFHT’s objective is to reduce human contact and minimize likelihood of spread during this pandemic. We cannot stress enough that the safety and well-being of our students, educators and families is paramount in this effort. As we continue to meet the LFHT’s benchmarks and make meaningful progress towards advancing equitable access and supporting continuity of education at home, including the forthcoming arrival of the Scholastic book packs, we look forward to continue providing you with weekly updates on our work.
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