The tiny Benson Village School in Vermont, hard-pressed for cash, had lots of ancient computers but no modern ones.

Thirty miles away, Middlebury College was upgrading some of its computer equipment and needed to get rid of the old machines.

Enter the Foundation for Excellent Schools (FES), a national nonprofit that is dedicated to helping educational institutions help each other. The Cornwall, Vt.-based FES brought Benson and Middlebury together, and last year the computers changed hands.

"They had a whole lab full of machines that


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