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School Year
in Review

donor with heart

Whether giving students books for at-home learning or getting each student their own set of supplies to maintain social distancing in the classroom, teachers have gone above and beyond to make learning possible. Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, the DonorsChoose community brought 261,286 teacher ideas to life, helping students to keep learning no matter their circumstances.

Meanwhile, my colleagues and I have been thinking about how to strengthen our focus on educational equity and to support the Black, Latino, and Indigenous students who, historically, have had least access to learning materials in our public schools.

As classrooms fill back up this fall, teachers and students will tell us what they need to thrive. Thank you for joining us in addressing those needs, helping to enrich students’ school lives.

Charles Best Signature

Charles Best
Founder & CEO, DonorsChoose

This school year

584,393 donors


261,286 Projects

85% of those projects came from schools serving
predominantly students from low-income households

marker boards with student handwriting
marker boards with student handwriting


120,679 Teachers

24% of our current teacher-users had at least
one project funded this year

marker boards with student handwriting


41,057 Schools

Our community powered us to order and ship 4.5 million resources to students and teachers across all 50 states and Washington D.C. this school year — including:

donor giving


Boxes of Crayons

project funded

1.6 Million


teachers helped



“When donors contribute to our projects
their investments shout out, unequivocally:
‘We believe in you and we have your back!’”

Ms. Andino

Ms. Andino

Middle School Teacher, Illinois

teacher and students in classroom

Teachers stepped up to make sure students continued learning throughout the pandemic.

Teachers adapted to a range of learning set ups and used DonorsChoose to advocate for what they and their students need most. By adding flexibility into our shipping, making gratitude packages digital-friendly, and more, we’ve been able to adapt our model and get materials in the hands of teachers and students, wherever they’re learning.

students learning online

Top supplies needed for online learning

  1. 1. Instructional technology
  2. 2. Technology for students
  3. 3. Basic supplies
students learning online

Top supplies needed for in-person learning

  1. 1. Basic Supplies
  2. 2. Technology
  3. 3. Educational kits & games

Helping states nimbly and safely distribute funding to teachers

In a first-of-its-kind government partnership, we worked with Delaware’s New Castle County leadership to securely distribute learning materials to COVID-19 impacted students and teachers across Delaware. New Castle County used over $1 million from their CARES Act relief funding to support projects like Ms. Shores's request for dry erase boards and headphones for every student to participate in learning while socially distanced.

marker boards with student handwriting

“Donors have provided unlimited opportunities for my students and me.”

Mrs. Reid


Ms. Loo

“The knowledge that people out there care about us and how we are doing AND are willing to take action to help is keeping us going!”

Ms. Rodrigue


Ms. Hernandez holding books

“It's such an incredible feeling to know that there are donors out there willing to support teachers as we strive to give our students an incredible education.”

Ms. Jabak


Dorothy and the books she reads to her students

“All of these books are helping us create such meaningful and important conversations.”

Ms. Higashi


teachers working hard to distribute food to students

“The time to act is now. We have a unique opportunity to make these changes to support our students and their families.”

Mr. Holmes

New York

Teachers use ingenuity

“Items from this project will be used to create individual supply kits which will limit the sharing of school supplies between students, as well as potential germs.”

Ms. Rapheal


By supporting teachers and students of color, along with anti-racist educational resources, we help combat racial inequity and injustice.

Even before COVID-19, districts serving the largest populations of Black, Latino, and Indigenous students received 13% less federal and state funding than those with higher populations of White students. During the pandemic, Black, Latino, and Indigenous students faced disproportionate challenges, like less access to in-person learning and less internet access while learning remotely — serving to widen education inequity. In the face of these systemic hurdles, students of color show incredible resiliency, striving towards big dreams and aspirations every day. Our community can help bring those dreams to life.

student opening boxes
group of happy teachers wearing masks

Partners rallied to support racial equity in education

Companies, foundations, and philanthropists funded projects from teachers of color, supported schools serving a majority Black, Latino, and Indigenous students, and backed projects from any teacher requesting anti-racist and culturally representative learning materials., Biz & Livia Stone, and Chevron Logos

Stepping outside the textbook to teach students about injustice

To help students across the country learn about the racist injustices of our criminal justice system, Equal Justice Initiative matched donations to projects requesting Just Mercy, by EJI founder Bryan Stevenson. Funded projects were fulfilled by MahoganyBooks, our new Black-owned vendor. In total, EJI brought to life 840 projects across 684 schools.

group of happy teachers wearing masks

“We want to support teachers, students, parents, communities and educators who believe that a more focused effort must be made to prepare a new generation so they are equipped to understand and eliminate racism, bigotry, and inequality.”

Bryan Stevenson Photo

Bryan Stevenson

Founder of the Equal Justice Initiative, author of Just Mercy

Owners of MahoganyBooks in their book store

We can make a difference by supporting equity in how we do business

Through our new vendor MahoganyBooks, a Black-owned, digital-first bookseller, we’ve helped deliver more than 56,000 books written for, by, and about people of the African Diaspora to classrooms across the country. Recognizing the key role Black-owned financial institutions play in building wealth and access within the Black community, we now keep 16% of our cash with Black-owned banks, Carver National Bank and CityFirst.

These initiatives mark early steps towards our organization’s goal of fostering an anti-racist education system that benefits every student.

Teacher holding science equipment illustration

From our teachers

Identity-affirming lessons

In her project, “Let Me Count the Moons,” Utah teacher Ms. Tuifua requested materials for an art project to understand the moon’s cycles as they relate to Tongan culture and agriculture, to which many of her Pacific Islander students are connected.

“It is important that our students recognize the scientific ingenuity of their ancestors and use it to enhance their knowledge taught from the textbook. I am deeply grateful for the opportunity to enrich my scholars with academic content and connect it to Indigenous cultural knowledge.”

Our community in the headlines

Kindness in the classroom — NBC News screenshot

The Today Show featured Allstate Foundation’s support of student mental health projects.

Halo Awards logo and Samsung Solve for Tomorrow logo

Engage for Good celebrated our partnership with Samsung Solve for Tomorrow with a Silver Halo Award in Education.

Charles Best with his students twenty years ago

Inside Philanthropy profiled Charles Best, where he shared how teachers were addressing remote learning.

Time 100 spoke with Charles Best and DonorsChoose Board Member W. Kamau Bell.

DonorsChoose Board Vice Chair Yvette Nicole Brown won Wheel of Fortune — and used her winnings to support our teachers.

From our teachers

Teachers as caregivers

Traditional learning materials aren’t the only way teachers support their students through DonorsChoose. Mrs. Burnette created an “SOS box” so that students can always access the essential care items they need to feel confident and focussed on learning.

“I want my students to feel safe at school. Part of that is providing them with items they may need in an emergency situation. I want to make sure they feel comfortable, safe, and provided for at school while they are away from home.”

Our partners celebrate teachers

Despite the incredible challenges of this year, companies, foundations, and individual philanthropists alike rallied to support learning wherever it happens.


This year’s #GivingTuesday felt especially profound, and FamilyAlbum doubled donations to help bring 21,765 projects to life.

Give Thanks Not Pranks

T-Mobile flipped April Fool’s Day on its head with their #GiveThanksNotPranks campaign. Every time someone posted on social using the hashtag, T-Mobile donated $5 to teachers.

Give Thanks Not Pranks

T-Mobile flipped April Fool’s Day on its head with their #GiveThanksNotPranks campaign. Every time someone posted on social using the hashtag, T-Mobile donated $5 to teachers.

Teacher Appreciation Week

#TeacherAppreciationWeek was bigger than ever as our community poured love on the educatorswho’ve been giving it their all. Ford, SONIC Drive-In,, Craig Newmark, Eat.Learn.Play. & Underarmour, Biz & Livia Stone, and College Football Playoff all joined the celebration.

“More books! Thanks to everyone especially @Ford and @donorschoose for helping me add more diversity to my classroom library.”

“As teacher appreciation week comes to a close I need to give a GIANT shoutout to @sonicdrivein they donated over $1,000 to my @donorschoose and helped fully fund my current project. My students and I are forever grateful!”

“@Google thank you for giving me a platform to tell my story and the story of my students! [I'm] so grateful for these beautiful titles to be added to our classroom library.”

“@craignewmark You’re amazing!! Your donation of $1 million helped myself and many more. We took our journals outside to do outdoor learning. My kids love all the books we received too. Thanks so much!!”

“Thank you @livia and @biz for your incredibly generous donation to my @DonorsChoose classroom! You’ve bettered the learning environment for countless kids and for that you are truly amazing.”

“Curry Brand is recognizing teachers in a big way! Curry Brand is funding sports and literacy projects in @StephenCurry30 hometowns of Oakland & Charlotte.”


Projects funded with help from our 231 company and foundation partners — that’s 74% of all requests!

Partner-logos partner logos

Thank you for helping students learn, and for your part in building a more equitable future for all students.

Find a classroom to support