The has announced that it awarded nearly $20 million over the past year to organizations nationwide working to provide teachers, parents, and students with access to personalized-learning technologies.
The grants represent a significant increase in the foundation's investment in such technologies, which enable public school teachers and parents to adapt instruction to meet the personal needs of each student. Grant recipients include the Michigan Education Excellence Foundation, which was awarded $10 million for the Education Achievement Authority of Michigan, a new system serving more than ten thousand students in some of the state's lowest performing schools; , which was awarded $1.35 million to conduct research on the use of student data to better adapt teacher-led instruction and improve computer-based approaches; and , which received $4 million to determine which of its free educational materials are most effective and to use that data to personalize learning based on optimized algorithms, work with schools to help teachers optimize instruction by using its materials in their classrooms, develop workshops and free online resources for teachers, and encourage more people to take advantage of its online offerings.
Other grant recipients include , a national network of blended learning schools working to eliminate the achievement gap in low-income neighborhoods, and , which provides students, teachers, parents, and school leaders with free online access to pre-screened digital learning activities produced by third parties.
"Although technology should never replace teachers, when used correctly, it can empower teachers and parents to personalize education in a scalable way that is not otherwise possible," said Broad Foundation senior director Luis de la Fuente. "We know of no better way to amplify the effects of great teachers and engage students and parents to become active partners in their own school experience. These organizations we are supporting are among those demonstrating the most promising results."