Girls at home attending school.

The Cleveland Metropolitan School District (CMSD) is deploying Spectrum Enterprise’s Stay Connected K-12 platform. The program, which delivers broadband at no charge directly to participant’s homes, initially will be provided to more than 5,300 families.

The Stay Connected K-12 service has five elements, according to Charter:

  • Download speeds as fast as 50 Mbps and capable of supporting video collaboration and large file transfers.
  • In-home WiFi able to connect WiFi-enabled devices in the residence.
  • Unlimited usage with no data caps, providing schools and districts with a consistent cost per user.
  • Self-installation kits including a modem and router allowing families to get connected quickly. There is no intervention required from schools or districts.
  • 24/7/365 technical support, which relieves schools and districts of the technical support responsibilities.

“Through Stay Connected K-12, the Spectrum Enterprise team is helping close the digital divide, providing the high quality connectivity needed to have a successful educational experience,” Bill Archer, Charter’s Executive Vice President and President of Spectrum Enterprise, said in a press release. “The turnkey solution is easy for school administrators to put into place, freeing them to maximize their focus on learning and student achievement.”

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According to a Charter spokesperson, schools can choose multiple ways to fund the Spectrum Enterprise Stay Connected K-12 solution for their students, including applying to the FCC’s Emergency Connectivity Fund. The spokesperson declined to comment on funding choices deployed by the CMSD.

The FCC Emergency Connectivity Fund has a budget of $7.1 billion and will provide schools and libraries with funds to pay for the purchase laptops and tablets, Wi-Fi hotspots, modems, routers and broadband connections for off-campus use by students, and school staff, as well as library patrons. The program’s application window recently closed.

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