Update 5/21/20: All funding for the Keep Kids Learning Pilot Program has been claimed by eligible teachers, and we are no longer accepting applications. If you already have a Walmart Select gift cards or Amazon.com Education Assistance Product Voucher, please check out our help center for more information.
What is the Keep Kids Learning Pilot Program?
With physical schools closed, we need a new way to get students what they need and deliver on our mission. This pilot program seeks to do just that — empowering teachers to get materials directly to students.
You can support this now! We’ve waived our 15% optional donation for this fund, so 100% of your gift will go to supplies for teachers and their students.
How does it work?
Teachers will be able to shop for urgent and essential items — from pre-approved items available on either Amazon.com or Walmart.com — to get their students what they need. Rather than shipping to closed schools, teachers will select shipping addresses that ensure materials get to their students even with schools closed.
Who can participate?
For this pilot period, funds will be directed specifically to eligible teachers at schools where the majority of students receive free and reduced lunch, the benchmark for need in United States public schools. As we learn more about the program and get more funding to support its expansion, we hope to open it up to additional public school teachers across the United States.
How are participating teachers selected?
- DonorsChoose teachers who qualify for possible funding:
- have had a past project funded on DonorsChoose* AND;
- teach at schools with 75%+ free and reduced priced lunch.
- Each time we have a substantial subset of funds raised, we email a randomly selected group of qualifying teachers, asking for them to opt into the program and share how they plan to use the funds.
- Teachers who opt in to participate receive a $1,000 education-only funding credit.
- Teachers with funding credit shop on our partner-vendor’s website for approved items and send those learning materials directly to their students' homes.
*Right now, we’re working exclusively with past DonorsChoose teachers for this pilot to ensure the trust and integrity ratings that our donors rely upon when giving.
Frequently Asked Questions
I'm a teacher, can I participate?
At this time there is no way to request to join our pilot teacher cohort, but we hope we can support more classrooms in the weeks to come. We understand the need for materials is urgent and far-reaching, and hope we can raise enough funding through this initiative to ensure as many public school teachers with students in need can benefit.
How will I know if I can benefit from this program?
Teachers who can participate immediately will be notified via email.
Why are only schools with high Free and Reduced Lunch (FRPL) rates getting funding?
Free and reduced lunch is the benchmark for need in United States public schools. We are starting this program in highest need schools and hope to expand as more funding becomes available.
How will teachers get funding from the Keep Kids Learning Fund?
For participating teachers, funding is issued in the form of an Amazon.com Education Assistance Product Voucher or a Walmart Select gift card. Each round of funding for the Keep Kids Learning Program is backed by either Amazon.com or Walmart and teachers cannot exchange one for the other.
Can my colleague get resources through the program?
Your colleague will be notified by DonorsChoose via email if they can participate.
I know a teacher who needs support, but they’ve never used DonorsChoose.
At this time only teachers who have successfully completed a project on DonorsChoose qualify for this program. As we understand demand and interest more, we may expand the program. For now, we’d encourage these teachers to register and create projects on DonorsChoose if they’re able to receive materials at a school or district site.
When are you going to expand the program?
We hope to expand the program as quickly as possible and as quickly as fundraising allows. If you’d like to help rally support for more teachers, please share your story for how your school was impacted by coronavirus and how you’re thinking about supporting your students in the weeks to come.
Who owns the materials?
All materials purchased using funding from the Keep Kids Learning program are considered the property of the students who receive the materials.
What types of materials can be purchased?
This is an education-specific product voucher and can be used to purchase pre-approved products focused on student health and learning, including —
- books (excludes adult romance novels or religious texts)
- shelf-stable groceries (excludes candy)
- hygiene items (excludes beauty products)
- basic supplies (like pens, paper, calculators)
- arts and crafts materials
Feel free to check back in on this article. We plan to update it regularly.
If you're a teacher trying to use your funding, please find help and tips —
For Walmart: How to use your Walmart Select gift cards
And for a complete list of updates on our response to coronavirus, please see Coronavirus (COVID-19) updates from DonorsChoose.