PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — A North Philadelphia elementary school got a gift that will help bridge the digital divide. It comes thanks to a partnership between Comcast Internet Essentials and KYW Newsradio.
First graders at General Philip Kearny Elementary at 6th and Fairmount got a surprise, 10 navy blue Dell laptops.
“I really like them because blue is my favorite color, and you know the sky is blue, too,” says Charlee Mason, a first grader. Charlee gave a speech thanking her family for nominating her school for the honor.
Before the gift, Kearny’s emotional support class, which included a rotating number of students from kindergarten to second grade, was equipped with only three laptops. The additional 10 computers means students have more opportunity to utilize technology.
“This is monumental for our school to have laptops for a whole class that can be shared out in a big way,” says Sabrina Scott-Feggins, the school’s principal. “Now they get to have the individual attention that they need. Students can do more projects with their classmates and have more computer time.”
“Internet essentials is all about leveling that playing field,” says Nick Jimenez, senior manager of internet essentials from Comcast.
He says the program provides low cost internet and computers to households living below the poverty line. Part of this effort includes providing access to low-resource schools like Kearny, which serves 350 students, grades kindergarten through eighth.
“We want to make sure that the children at this school has access to everything they need,” Jimenez says.
“KYW is all about serving our community,” says David Yadgaroff, general manager for Entercom Philadelphia.
He notes the partnership with Comcast helps further KYW Newsradio’s mission.
“We are lucky that we get to do such quality improvements in the community like this program,” he said.
Since 2011, Comcast has invested $350 million in cash and in kind donations to help bridge the digital divide.