Harris: $100 million donation from University of Pennsylvania a boon for our students

PHILADELPHIA, Nov. 18 – State Rep. Jordan Harris, D-Phila., House Democratic whip, today applauded the $100 million donation pledged by the University of Pennsylvania to the School District of Philadelphia to help remediate environmental hazards over the next 10 years.

“First and foremost, our students deserve a safe, healthy environment to learn and grow, and our educators and support staff deserve the ability to provide an education in an environment that isn’t detrimental to their health,” Harris said. “Unfortunately, far too many of our schools don’t provide that as their failing infrastructure leaves too much risk for students and teachers.

“This investment from the University of Pennsylvania will do so much good in creating a better learning environment and protecting the health of all those who enter our schools. Education is the elevator out of poverty and for too long that elevator has been broken in Philadelphia. We must do everything possible to ensure our students get the educational experience they deserve.”

The University of Pennsylvania will donate the $100 million in $10 million increments over 10 years and has earmarked the funding for environmental remediation, such as asbestos and lead abatement.

“We’re living in unprecedented times as our city, state and nation struggle with a once-in-a-lifetime pandemic, an increased focus on systemic racism and the rise of civil unrest over injustices that we still see far too often in our communities,” Harris said. “This donation is a bright spot that will benefit our city, its students and educators as we aim to create the best possible environment for learning. I sincerely thank the University of Pennsylvania and President Amy Gutman for this generous donation.”