"If I had to choose between an amazing teacher and amazing technology, I’d choose a teacher every time. The ideal, however, is when amazing technology can be used to empower that amazing teacher."Sal Khan
Khan Academy Founder and CEO
In 2019 we made a big bet that we could do more to help children learn in school. And not just any big bet, but an investment that recognized that right now children aren’t competing on an even playing field. While all children have the potential to learn, not all children get the same opportunities. We needed to do more to address this inequality.
Last year your support launched the first-ever Khan Academy resources designed to be used not just by a single teacher in a classroom but across a school or an entire school district. We deliberately partnered with districts who serve high populations of students traditionally facing barriers to academic success.
In addition to software development, you funded deployment of the Khan Academy team to classrooms across the country, where they provided teacher training, worked closely with teachers and administrators to see what was working and what needed to be improved, and rigorously studied the results.
For the 2019-2020 school year, Khan Academy brought these new tools to
*students eligible for the Free and Reduced Lunch program to provide food for students of low-income families
for a total of
If you were lucky enough to have an extraordinary teacher, you know that a teacher can change the course of your life. For some sixth graders in Ronald Edmonds Middle School 113 in Brooklyn, New York, Ms. Bien-Aime is that teacher.
"I show up for them, and they show up for me," she explained.
Growing up, Magala Bien-Aime was on a mission to help children of color, particularly those facing economic hardship. She originally considered law, but after a fateful intervention from a college professor, she realized she could do more to help children by going into education. She is now a special education/math specialist teaching sixth-grade math to students using Khan Academy in her classroom.
Math was not her first choice.
"I was informed I would be teaching math. I was very hesitant because I struggled with math all my life. It was a complete learning curve, but it was one of the best learning curves I’ve had in my life,” she said. She used Khan Academy to learn how to teach the subject and brought Khan Academy into her classroom.
Now she's not only a passionate advocate of math, she’s also helping her own students make that same journey.
"I have students who came to me hating math now come up to me and say, 'I want to be a math teacher.' Or they say, 'I've never had a math teacher who looks like you.'"
Magala uses Khan Academy's data to track where students need help and assigns her students material and practice problems specific to the areas they need to learn or the gaps they need to fill.
"There is a misconception that Khan Academy is only for schools where students are high performing or for a certain demographic. I don't subscribe to that. Every student has the capability to learn. And Khan Academy can help every student."Magala Bien-Aime
Special Education/Math Specialist
Brooklyn, New York
She's seen many of her students show impressive growth, including one particular student who has done so well, Magala is pushing to get him included in general education classes next year.
"[In sixth grade], he came to me at a second- or third-grade level. They said this was a child who would never succeed. If you just look at his paperwork, they are telling you what he can’t do. To watch him now brings tears to my eyes," said Magala. She explained that the student had been scoring 30s and 40s on his tests until he had a breakthrough and scored an 85 on a test on fractions.
"He was shocked. He looked at his paper and said, 'How did this happen?' I said, 'That's all you.' Since then he has gotten 90s on all his tests."