The South Central Ohio Educational Service Center, in New Boston, Ohio, recently distributed 60 mobile hotspots to be installed on several school busses in our surrounding school districts, to provide Internet access to students in rural Ohio.
“A lot of our district populations don’t have adequate Wi-Fi or Internet to even complete a virtual curriculum and we had to come up with a solution,” said ESC Superintendent Sandy Mers.
The solution was Wi-Fi routers that are installed on school buses or inside community buildings to create mobile hotspot areas where students can connect and access online curriculum. Each district will determine the most effective way to place their hotspots and will communicate their plans with their students and guardians. Internet activity is restricted to safe and CIPA (Children’s Internet Protection Act) approved sites.
While the buses could help deliver online curriculum in the event of another shutdown or snow day, they also will provide students access as they ride the bus to school, field trips, or away games.
The routers, along with the mobile data, were funded through a grant from the Growing Rural Independence Together (GRIT) initiative and the Ohio Workforce Development Board.