Elon Musk has donated $5 million to American non-profit educational organization Khan Academy, which seeks to help students and teachers across the globe by providing access to free education programs.
The free education app has boomed during the pandemic — but so have its costs.
That’s because Khan Academy Kids has no ads or in-app purchases. The app gets its funding from donations.
Since school lockdowns began last March, about 20 to 30 million students are using the Khan Academy’s platform every month.
Sal Khan, the organization’s founder and executive director, says the kids app alone is racking up deficits of about $3 million per year, and server costs have become a bigger concern as users continue to increase.
Khan says that Musk’s $5 million donation will go a long way.
“Elon, I hope you really feel good about this. This is going to allow us to accelerate all sorts of content. Our aspirations are all subjects from K through the early stages of college. This will accelerate our science content, allow us to do more on early learning, allow us to make the software and practice that much more engaging for millions of students around the world, for teachers around the world,” Khan said in a video thank-you message.
In the meantime, Khan Academy Kids is operating on the assumption that more funding will come through.
“What I’ve told the team is, this is our moment to step up,” Khan told Fast Company. “Let’s step up and do what we think is right, and hopefully the universe will conspire to recognize that. I have my fingers crossed.”