School buses to serve as Wi-Fi hot spots around North Carolina for remote learning

RALEIGH (WTVD) -- Starting this week, additional school buses will be bringing internet access to more communities around North Carolina so that students can connect to school online.

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As many as 280 more school buses will be equipped with Wi-Fi thanks to donations from AT&T, Google and Duke Energy Foundation. AT&T and Google are providing up to 100 Wi-Fi hot spots each and the Duke Energy Foundation is providing up to 80. The first 156 devices are expected to be delivered starting Wednesday to communities in 29 counties across the state.



NC interactive map shows spots for free, low-cost internet access

The buses will travel to underserved areas in school districts and park in designated locations, such as a school nutrition meal distribution site or a grocery store, so students can use this temporary access to turn in assignments, download materials and connect with teachers.

The drive-up Wi-Fi access will also be available for all residents in the communities to use to connect to healthcare providers, apply for unemployment, and access other critical information and services while exercising appropriate social distancing precautions.

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Schools in Avery, Bertie, Bladen, Burke, Caswell, Chowan, Columbus, Duplin, Edgecombe, Franklin, Gaston, Gates, Halifax, Harnett, Hertford, Johnston, Martin, Montgomery, Northampton, Perquimans, Person, Randolph (includes Asheboro City Schools), Robeson, Sampson (includes Clinton City Schools), Scotland, Tyrrell, Vance, Wayne, Warren and Yadkin counties will receive the first 156 Wi-Fi hotspots.

As schools switch to online courses, students who lack access to internet, computers suffer

Local school officials will determine the exact locations and schedules for school bus Wi-Fi hot spots in their communities.

More information about the program can be found here.

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