SANTA BARBARA — Distance learning revealed needs in Santa Barbara Unified School District’s student body: internet access, headphones, learning supplies and food.
The Santa Barbara Education Foundation and SB Unified teamed up in July and launched the Student Online & Academic Resources (SOAR) campaign. It seeks donations to provide food and materials to students.
“Right now, our students’ needs are great,” Superintendent Hilda Maldonado said in a press release. “But with our community’s help, we can ensure our continued academic success during this difficult time.”
One out of seven students in the district are considered homeless, according to SBEF. And 47% of students rely on school for meals.
SBUSD served almost 500,000 meals at pickup stations over a few months and provided iPads and Chromebooks to students and set up wifi for families.
Through the SOAR campaign, SBEF raised enough to fund additional wifi hotspots and send students with music and art kits for at-home learning. But the campaign is still ongoing.
To learn more, visit santabarbaraeducation.org.
— Annelise Hanshaw