Thousands of RCSD students to get free home internet

The Rochester City School District will offer free home internet access to any high school student who lacks it beginning in September, it announced Monday; the culmination of a years-long campaign to bring all district students into the internet age.

RCSD was chosen to participate in the 1Million Project Foundation, affiliated with telecommunication provider Sprint. Every student lacking reliable home internet access will be given a MiFi hot spot with 10 gigabytes of high-speed data per month, then an unlimited amount of data at a slower speed after that.

RCSD Chief Information Officer Annmarie Lehner estimated that more than 4,000 students in grades 9-12 will receive the devices in the fall. The mobile hot spots can be used in conjunction with district-owned Chromebook laptops, which are now provided to every student in the classroom.

The plan will cost the district nothing and has no end date, with each incoming class of ninth graders getting hot spots if they need them.

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