News

Arkansas invests $65 mil. in ultra high-speed internet for schools

By Chad Hunter, Times Record, Fort Smith, Ark.
July 20th, 2015

Upgrade designed to reflect “age of online testing,” said one superintendent

internet-upgradeFort Smith schools are the first to connect to Arkansas’ improved high-speed Internet system designed to offer speeds 40 times faster than the current statewide average.

The $65 million initiative for improved broadband service in Arkansas schools kicked off at a small ceremony held Wednesday afternoon at the Fort Smith School District’s Rogers Center.

“This is a big day for Arkansas,” Arkansas Department of Information Systems Director Mark Myers said. “That equipment is expensive and that connection is expensive, but it’s what the students of Arkansas deserve.”

The upgraded Arkansas Public School Computer Network offers speeds of 200 Kbps versus the current statewide average of 5 Kbps, Myers said. More than 230 other school districts and charter schools are in line for the upgrade.

Next page: Details of the upgrade