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EPS receives grant to provide internet “hot spots” for students

Posted Date: 09/09/2019

EPS receives grant to provide internet “hot spots” for students

Every Enid Public Schools middle school and high school student will have access to the internet at home and “on the go” next year, thanks to a $1 million grant from T-Mobile.

The school district was selected by the company for its EmpowerED grant to purchase 4,000 MiFi 4G wireless access points and two years of internet service. These mobile “hot spots” will enable all students in grades 6-12 to have high-speed internet for home use. The access will be properly filtered to ensure a safe-surfing experience for students, free of inappropriate web content.

“This generous grant from T-Mobile, a total of – $1,088,000 – will open the door to even more resources for our students,” Superintendent Dr. Darrell Floyd said. “Through the support of our community, we have provided all students with 1:1 technology, and these hot spots will allow them to utilize this technology to its greatest potential. It takes our efforts to the next level. We are thankful for this grant and our partnership with T-Mobile.”

According to T-Mobile, the company’s EmpowerED initiative endeavors to bridge the “digital divide” that exists between students whose families can and cannot afford internet access at home. The program seeks to ensure that all students can benefit from the technology needed to receive a quality education.

“Every student deserves access to the information they need to support their learning,” EPS Technology Director Jeff Herbel said. “With this program, we are removing financial barriers and ensuring that all students have the opportunity to research meaningful, educational online resources. Bridging this gap helps level the playing field for all students, while maximizing their opportunities for success.”

The MiFi mobile units will provide each student with 2 GB of high-speed internet access per month. Once that level has been exceeded, the rate drops to 128 kbps for unlimited data. 

EPS applied for the grant in December and received news that it was awarded in March. Distribution of the devices to secondary students will begin when school begins in the fall.