During the 2013-14 academic year, with support from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, DonorsChoose and Digital Promise provided over 300 K–8 teachers nationwide with up to $6,000 each for the purchase of digital courseware in core content areas. Participating teachers were from four districts within the League of Innovative Schools. The Teacher Wallets pilot program allowed teachers to make their own budget and purchasing decisions about instructional technologies.
SRI was the research partner on the project, studying participation to better understand teacher decision-making, the effectiveness of a direct-to-teacher approach to courseware procurement, and factors that influence choices under the direct-to-teacher approach. Throughout the program, SRI analyzed courseware selections made by participating teachers as well as information and feedback from teachers and administrators to better understand how teachers find, evaluate, and implement digital courseware in their classrooms.