At Dalio Education, we are working to engage and excite high school students who are struggling. Young people who face the most obstacles and challenges deserve every opportunity we can afford them so that they can gain skills, graduate from high school, reach their full potential and be successful in life.
Young people struggle to thrive when their essential needs go unmet, or when they are burdened with poor physical or mental health, or the effects of trauma. That's why, for example, we have donated more than 32,000 winter coats to families in need across the state since 2015, and partner with Clifford Beers, a leading behavioral health clinic, to support a school-based mental and social wellness program in five New Haven public schools. Through our partnership with Clifford Beers, approximately 200 students and families annually access a comprehensive suite of services and supports to promote their physical and mental health.
We are also responsive to how the holistic supports that students need to succeed can change as broader conditions evolve. As schools transitioned to remote learning in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, students without access to technology at home faced enormous barriers to engaging in education. Shortly after the pandemic hit, Dalio Education worked with the state to distribute laptops to 60,000 high school students in Connecticut’s highest-need school districts and joined together with the Connecticut Conference of Municipalities (CCM) to expand access to high speed internet. In follow up to commissioned research and polling to better understand and raise awareness about Connecticut’s digital divide, CCM and Dalio Education collaborated with Hartford and Norwalk to expand internet connectivity for tens of thousands of Connecticut families.
CCM and Dalio Education partnered with the City of Hartford and Cisco to install approximately 800 outdoor high-speed internet hotspots to create a city-wide mesh network that can be accessed at no cost, at any time, from any neighborhood in the city. In less than one year from the project launch, this network of hotspots will enable every Hartford resident to connect to LTE-standard speed and capacity internet service from any wireless-enabled device, bringing internet connectivity to more than 124,000 residents previously without it. Dalio Education is providing $1.5 million to support this project, matched dollar-for-dollar by the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving, with the city contributing an additional $1 million. CCM and Dalio Education also partnered with the City of Norwalk to provide one year of free high-speed internet access for families who need it in the city.