Tech giant Google surprised hundreds of Los Angeles teachers on Monday by fulfilling their requests for books, microscopes, musical instruments and other classroom materials through the crowd-funding website DonorsChoose.org.
Google donated nearly $1 million to help each of the 769 Los Angeles Unified School District teachers who used DonorChoose.org for financial help with their projects, covering all 1,071 requests.
Google also has used “flash funding” in San Francisco, Atlanta, Chicago, Washington, D.C., Austin and Kansas City.
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti joined Google executives and actor Kevin McHale from the television show “Glee” at Marina Del Rey Middle School to deliver the unexpected news.
“Our school teachers give their all every day to ensure that Los Angeles students reach their full potential,” Garcetti said.”We’re grateful for their ongoing dedication and passion that’s inspiring the next generation of Angelenos — and I’m thrilled that the help of Google and DonorsChoose.org will help every student reach their dreams a little faster.”
One of the donations will go toward buying bird guides and binoculars for Heather Vibbert’s students at Marina Del Rey Middle School. Google also funded Vibbert’s seven other projects, which included requests for laptops, young adult novels and six iPad minis to teach students computer programming.
Thomas Williams, who leads Google’s Venice office, said as a long-time Angeleno and parent of LAUSD students, he has”seen how hard our school teachers work, how dedicated they are and how, often, the resources they would like to have to help our children just aren’t available.”
“As our office and company has been committed to education, especially for under-served communities, it was a perfect opportunity to fund all the DonorsChoose.org projects throughout LAUSD,” Williams said.
DonorsChoose.org CEO and founder Charles Best called it a “great day for Los Angeles classrooms” and said the company was “so humbled and grateful to Google for their devotion to our teachers and students.”