from Politco Morning Ed By Caitlin Emma
With help from Allie Grasgreen and Nirvi Shah
WHITE HOUSE-INSPIRED TECH GIFTS SLOWLY MAKE WAY TO SCHOOLS: More than a year after 10 private companies pledged to invest $2 billion worth of free software, wireless connections and other technology into U.S. classrooms, some students are still waiting to reap the benefits. The companies first pledged their donations in February 2014 as part of the Obama administration's ConnectED initiative, which has a goal of connecting 99 percent of students to high-speed broadband by 2018. The White House is in the early stages of gathering information about the corporate donors' progress and plans to issue a report on its findings as early as the start of the new school year. Some companies are rolling out their donations in a slow, deliberate way, ensuring that high-need students are served first and that products like filtered, fast and free wireless connections are safe and high quality. But other companies have hit roadblocks trying to reach students and schools. Many schools still lack the hardware or wireless infrastructure needed to run the software, for example. And at others, teachers and administrators are hesitant to dive into the unfamiliar world of digital learning that goes beyond the technology they're already used to.