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Pacers, Lilly Foundations Tip Off Year Two of NBA Math Hoops at William McKinley School 39

The Pacers Foundation and the Lilly Foundation tip off the second year of the successful NBA Math Hoops program today at IPS WilliamMcKinley School 39 part of Lilly’s Global Day of Service.

Pacers executives, Lilly employees, and education leaders were on-site with students as they began the second year of Math Hoops play.

“The fact that NBA Math Hoops is so popular with IPS students and participation is growing means that we’re doing something right and, if we have an opportunity to reach more students, than we should,” said Rick Fuson, CEO of Pacers Sports & Entertainment. “Being able to increase students’ interest in and access to STEM skills in such a fun and meaningful way is powerful. We’re grateful to the Lilly Foundation for its continued generous support and partnership that’s allowing us to impact more students here and across the state.”

Last September, the Pacers Foundation and the Lilly Foundation announced a four-year initiative, made possible by a generous $800,000 grant from the Lilly Foundation to the Pacers Foundation, to reinforce STEM education in Indianapolis Public Schools (IPS) through the NBA Math Hoops program.

The NBA Math Hoops program is a dynamic experience that features digital and physical games, classroom/after school curricula, and community events that allow students and educators to explore fundamental STEM and social-emotional skills through the game of basketball. Initially developed in the classroom of a math educator, the program has scaled to engage over 600,000 students nationwide and has demonstrated success over time in improving outcomes in cities where it has been implemented through schools and community organizations.

“We’re excited to bring a dynamic element to our classrooms through NBA Math Hoops. It’s not just about points on the court; it’s about scoring in the world of STEM and equipping our students with the skills they need to excel both on and off the court of life,” said Dr. Aleesia Johnson, IPS. superintendent.  

This school year, the NBA Math Hoops program expanded into eight additional IPS schools, and, to continue their effort to strengthen access to quality STEM education, schools across the state of Indiana can participate in NBA Math Hoops. Program materials, resources, incentives, and support for PS&E NBA Math Hoops are provided by our partnership with the Lilly Foundation. All schools enrolled in the program will receive these resources and opportunities free of charge.

Schools and youth serving nonprofit organizations can reach out to for information about enrolling in NBA Math Hoops.