Gates Foundation, Startup:Education Award $9 Million for K-12 Broadband Initiative

, a national nonprofit working to remove the roadblocks to high-speed Internet for students and teachers, has announced grants totaling $9 million from the and Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg's .

Founded in 2012 by telecom and media entrepreneur Evan Marwell, EducationSuperHighway is working to encourage state and local policy makers to join twenty-six states and thousands of school districts in a national effort to improve high-speed Internet access for America’s K-12 students. In the past year, 600,000 students, teachers, and administrators have taken part in the organization's , which, to date, has found that 72 percent of America’s public schools lack the broadband connectivity they need for digital learning.

The organization also is working to update, strengthen, and expand the Federal Communications Commission's program, which connects schools to gigabit broadband and robust wi-fi. "When schools and teachers have access to reliable Internet connections, students can discover new skills and ideas beyond the classroom," said Zuckerberg. "The future of our economy and society depend largely on the next generation using and building new online tools and services, and I'm glad to support EducationSuperHighway's work."

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