3 barriers, 3 fixes for school broadband

Despite meeting connectivity goals, most districts still have to increase the amount of broadband they purchase in order to keep up with demand, which is growing in K-12 schools at a rate of more than 50 percent per year, EducationSuperHighway says. In fact, the typical school district will have to triple its bandwidth in the next three years.

Three things can help connect all of the nation’s students to school broadband:

  • Connect 9,500 schools to fiber: Twelve percent of schools that need a fiber connection do not have one, and EducationSuperHighway estimates it will cost roughly $1 billion to achieve connectivity.
  • Ensure every classroom has wi-fi: Districts can leverage the $3.4 billion in funding available for internal connections over the next four years to ensure every classroom has wi-fi.
  • Make school broadband affordable: Continually focusing on affordability, and striving to lower the cost of broadband access to $3 per Mbps, would help 12.2 million students meet the FCC’s minimum access goal. If remaining districts invest $0.25 per student per year, every student would be able to meet the FCC’s minimum goal.

“Digital learning has the power to transform education in this country, but that can’t happen without
first connecting all of our students to high-speed Internet. By working together to put a broadband
foundation in place, we can ensure that every student, in every state has equal opportunity for a world-class education,” said Evan Marwell, CEO of EducationSuperHighway, in a press release about the report.

To access information about your specific state, click here for a list of all states, and click here for an interactive tool.

Laura Ascione
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