Several school districts in the Santa Clarita Valley are eligible to receive a portion of the latest round of latest round of the Education Technology K-12 Voucher Program funding.
The William S. Hart Union High School District, the Sulphur Springs Union School District, the Newhall School District and the Saugus Union School District are among more than 8,000 eligible schools and districts statewide that will share $11.9 million in distribution funds, according to the California Department of Education.
The$11.9 million is the fifth round of distribution funds stemming from a 13-year-old antitrust agreement and settlement between Microsoft Corporation and California businesses and consumers.
Microsoft’s previous settlement distribution funds, in 2006, 2010, 2014 and 2015, totaled more than $470 million to support education technology and classroom instruction.
“These funds have improved our students’ education by allowing California to wire our classrooms, modernize instruction, successfully give online tests to 3.1 million students, and make progress in closing the digital divide,” State Superintendent of Public Education Tom Torlakson said in a statement. “I encourage all eligible schools and districts to apply for these technology funds.”
Eligible schools can use the voucher program to purchase technology products like computer hardware and software and to support training for technology use in the classroom. The schools and districts will have two years, until Nov. 30, 2018, to purchase products or services for voucher reimbursement.
Criteria for school eligibility included:
- If they were previously eligible for the Education Technology K–12 Voucher Program
- All public K–12 schools, county offices of education, direct-funded charter schools and State Special Schools in which at least 40 percent of the certified 2015-16 enrollment qualified for free or reduced price meals through the National School Lunch Program
- All public high schools in California that serve students from public elementary, middle and junior high schools in California in which at least 40 percent of the certified 2015-16 enrollment qualified for free or reduced price meals through the National School Lunch Program
Schools are no longer required to have an education technology plan to be eligible for the funding; however, the California Department of Education encourages schools to develop their own plans through its free online Technology Plan Builder.
On Twitter as @_ChristinaCox_