PHA Digital Learning Partnership Expands Access to Education

(Philadelphia – September 21, 2020) – Students who live in public housing are betteroff, thanks to a partnership between the Philadelphia Housing Authority (PHA), the School District of Philadelphia, the Boys and Girls Clubs of Philadelphia, and the City of Philadelphia.

“This partnership has provided students with laptops, digital access, remote tutoring, and training for lab monitors,” said PHA President and CEO Kelvin A. Jeremiah. “With the switch to virtual learning during the pandemic, a complete package of services is required. We are most thankful and appreciative to the City, the School District of Philadelphia and the Boys and Girls Clubs of Philadelphia.”

Many students in the School District of Philadelphia, including those in public housing, are underprivileged and come from low income or very low income families. Acquiring laptops and digital access on their own is a challenge and, for many, impossible.

The School District has identified over 700 PHA youth that have yet to receive a Chrome Book for virtual learning. PHA mailed letters to over 400 residents in the North Philadelphia area advising them to pick up laptops. Chrome books were made available students and parents at Vaux High School and the John F. Street Center.

Eight Computer Lab Monitors participated in a 4-hour Chromebook Training program facilitated by the School District. The District provided Lab monitors with Chromebooks and trained them on ways to support students with remote learning. Lab monitors are available during the day in the computer labs for children who need support while attending school virtually.

The Boys & Girls Club is providing remote access learning assistants to a maximum of 22 youth from 8 am to 3 pm, Monday – Friday at Abbottsford Homes, Johnson Homes, Raymond Rosen, Harrison Plaza, Wilson Park, Paschal Village, Spring Garden, Bartram Village, Fairhill Apartments.

The City of Philadelphia has partnered with PHA to provide remote assistance for students, Monday-Friday. The locations are at the JFS Center, Vaux HS & Lucian E. Blackwell Center from 8am to 3 pm. The City has provided staff at all 3 sites and hotspots for the youth as well as food.