Salesforce Announces Work.com For Schools and $20 Million to Help Schools Reopen Safely and Support Student Learning Anywhere
Technology helps schools make smart decisions on when it’s safe to return to campus, monitor the health of students and teachers, and better support those who are learning remotely
Company grants $20 million to San Francisco, Oakland, Indianapolis, Chicago and New York City school districts to support distance learning and help bridge the equity gap for students and educators
Salesforce’s education investment now totals $118 million
Salesforce, the global leader in CRM, announced Work.com for Schools to help schools make data-driven decisions on when and how to return to campus safely, facilitate communication between teachers and families at scale, and support students remotely. The company is also granting $20 million to support five major public school districts across the U.S.—empowering them to provide equitable, safe and connected learning from anywhere.
As the new school year begins amid the continuing pandemic, administrators must try to balance education and safety as they navigate disparate reopening guidelines, data and community pressures. They’ve had to build new remote learning models while reimagining physical classrooms, placing incredible strain on already limited resources. For children, the pandemic has caused an education crisis, which is disproportionately impacting low-income and minority families, as well as those living with disabilities.
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“Schools are the backbone of our communities—the heart and soul of our neighborhoods. We need to ensure that every student has access to the best education regardless of circumstance,” said Ebony Beckwith, Chief Philanthropy Officer, Salesforce. “As we reimagine education for a learn-anywhere world, we are committed to helping our schools reopen safely, teach from anywhere and create a more equitable future for every student.”
Helping Schools Create a Trusted and Safe Campus Experience
Earlier this year, Salesforce released Work.com, new technology to help businesses and governments around the world reopen safely and build more resilient communities. Now, as school districts plan their return, Work.com for Schools gives administrators and staff technology designed to help them navigate the complexities of reopening and managing ongoing campus safety:
- Workplace Command Center is a single technology hub for school administrators to get a comprehensive view of campus readiness, make data-driven decisions, take action, and communicate with families, teachers and staff effectively. Administrators can make decisions based on real-time, tailored public health data as well as private wellness data from within their school community.
- Wellness Check gives schools the ability to assess if students, teachers and staff are able to return to campus. Administrators can customize Salesforce’s CDC-aligned health surveys and automate follow-up actions based on a staff or student’s wellness status. From the Command Center, school leaders can surface wellness trends and insights to drive informed decisions around returning staff and students to school, while helping to keep community health data secure.
- Contact Tracing allows administrators to manually trace health relationships efficiently and privately by collecting data from individuals who are infected or potentially exposed to an infectious disease. Administrators can use visual maps of contacts and locations to monitor and take safety precautions to avoid further interactions and outbreak.
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Helping Schools Support Students and Engage with Families From Anywhere
With new Education Cloud innovations for K-12, schools can support students and families no matter where they are.
- Communications and Family Engagement Tools enable schools to manage communications quickly and at scale by connecting with families on their preferred channel or device through email, social, text or phone. School leaders can share relevant and personalized updates, track responses, and follow up with families who need additional support.
- Student Success Hub will help schools deliver equitable and holistic student support by connecting students with the services they need to thrive—from food and mental health services to devices, tutoring and more. K-12 counselors and staff will be equipped to manage student progress, intervene early and collaboratively, and measure key outcomes, even if students are remote.
$20 Million in Grants to Support Education
In addition to shutting down schools across the U.S. overnight, the COVID-19 pandemic has disproportionately impacted vulnerable populations—in particular, communities of color. Schools are embracing remote learning, but too many students don’t own a computer or have internet access in their homes to log on, let alone learn. In Oakland, CA, around 50 percent of public school students lack access to technology at home, such as the internet and computers; and nationwide, about 23 percent of households lack high-speed access. This gap, often referred to as the digital divide, threatens to widen already existing achievement and opportunity gaps in our public schools.
Building upon its longstanding commitment to supporting local public schools, Salesforce’s $20 million in new grants are focused on advancing equity, supporting teachers, and helping close the digital divide that has emerged from the pandemic.
- San Francisco Unified School District (SFUSD): $9 million to support the district’s reimagination of school through the COVID-19 pandemic and to build upon existing programs to improve student outcomes and opportunities. This is Salesforce’s eighth year partnering with SFUSD, delivering $100,000 per school of unrestricted funds to all SFUSD middle-grade principals through the Principal’s Innovation Fund annually. This year, the fund is increased to $200,000 per school for additional support.
- Oakland Unified School District (OUSD): $9 million to support middle school students and educators through the challenges of the pandemic, with unique support for Newcomers—unaccompanied immigrant youth, refugees and asylum seekers. This is Salesforce’s fifth year partnering with OUSD, which will also receive $200,000 Principal Innovation Fund school allocations for each of its schools.
- Indianapolis Public Schools (IPS): $500,000 to support professional development for educators, including racial equity training for teachers. Salesforce has also committed $100,000 to IPS’ COVID-19 relief fund. This is Salesforce’s third year partnering with IPS.
- Chicago Public Schools (CPS): $500,000 to train the next generation of school leaders and to provide STEM-related early college and career experiences for students in underserved communities. Salesforce has committed $100,000 to CPS’ COVID-19 relief fund. This is Salesforce’s third year partnering with CPS.
- New York City Department of Education (NYC DOE): $500,000 to expand and accelerate the district’s efforts to create a more equitable school system in light of unprecedented new challenges faced by school communities as a result of COVID-19. This grant also supports implementing the Graduate Profile—the set of knowledge, skills, and experiences all NYC public school students should gain through their education in NYC DOE. This is Salesforce’s second year partnering with NYC DOE.
- Courageous Conversation Global Foundation: $500,000 to develop partnerships to promote racial justice and interracial understanding, supporting our five district partners. This donation will help ensure schools in each district have access to the knowledge, skills, and capacity to build racial equity leaders and practitioners from within.
Salesforce’s Investment in Education Reaches $118 Million
The latest grants bring Salesforce’s total investment in education to $118 million, including $85.4 million to San Francisco and Oakland public schools. Salesforce employees have volunteered more than 755,000 hours to support education and workforce development initiatives.
Through Salesforce’s Circle the Schools program, employees participate in volunteer activities designed to advance student skills, including literacy in elementary schools, STEM in middle schools, and college and career readiness in high schools. Since 2013, Salesforce employees have adopted more than 124 schools globally in 43 cities, including 34 schools in San Francisco and Oakland. Salesforce is committed this year to hosting 100 virtual volunteer events with its employees to help students and educators face this transition globally.
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Supporting Student Success and Lifelong Learning
From K-12 to higher education and beyond, Salesforce provides a number of additional technologies to empower students, teachers, and administrators to support lifelong learning and student success:
- Education Cloud drives learner and institution success with 360-degree views across the entire educational journey. With one integrated CRM platform for education, K-12, and higher education institutions can create personalized experiences at scale designed to transform learner engagements into lifelong relationships.
- Trailhead, Salesforce’s free online learning platform, breaks down the barriers to learning and empowers job-seekers to learn new skills for the new normal and earn resume-worthy credentials that companies are hiring for.
- Tableau makes it simple for active students and instructors to unlock the power of data, ask sophisticated questions, get actionable answers, and share their findings easily online. Through the Tableau Academic Program, it’s free for active students and instructors.
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