Battle Creek Public Schools Invest $1.5 Million Toward “Digital Divide”
This week, the Battle Creek Public Schools Board of Education approved a $1.5 million investment in the district’s technology program. A key focus of the investment is on ensuring that every student in the district will have access to a device. While BCPS continues to work closely with the Michigan Department of Education to finalize plans for fall instruction, the district is making this investment now for all students to have access to the devices they need for both in-person and virtual learning throughout the coming school year.
Access to technology and closing the digital divide will be integral to setting up BCPS students for success, now more than ever. “At BCPS, we see every student by name, need and strength. We heard from our families about the challenges they faced during school closures to meet their students’ needs, and this investment is a direct response to that,” said BCPS Superintendent Kimberly Carter. “The goal of this investment is to make sure we have enough devices for every BCPS student, even families with more than one student in the household. It is our top priority to ensure that our families have what they need to support their students’ continuing education.”
After the state-mandated school closures in April 2020, BCPS distributed over 1,800 Google Chromebooks to students and families as learning shifted to a fully virtual environment for the rest of the school year. Last night’s newly approved investment of $1.5 million will build on the district’s recent efforts to increase access to technology and further close the digital divide in the Battle Creek community. The funds for this investment will be provided by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation and the federal Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund.
“We are so proud to be able to make this investment in support of our students and are extremely excited about the learning opportunities that improved access to technology will bring,” said BCPS Superintendent Kimberly Carter. “This coming school year, no student will miss out on virtual learning because they don’t have a device.”