School City of Mishawaka asking board to approve funds for hotspots

Published: Apr. 12, 2023 at 6:29 PM EDT
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MISHAWAKA, Ind. (WNDU) - A School City of Mishawaka School Board vote could make sure more district families have home internet access.

Top district officials are asking board members to approve $53,400 in district funds to pay for 200 portable hotspots that will provide families 1-year of unlimited internet via T-Mobile.

This is part of an ongoing partnership with non-profit EnFocus and its Citywide Classroom project that aims to help bridge the “digital divide” among local families. Last fall, a federal grant helped SCM buy enough hotspots to help more than 550 students - most of whom were in high school.

“We did a survey of our families. About 20 percent of our families said they did not have reliable internet so we’re working to address that gap,” explained Matt Modlin, Director of Technology at School City of Mishawaka.

Modlin said one of the main goals of distributing more hotspots is to help students perform optional, extended learning modules as well as connect students’ parents to the internet.

“We feel that they can use our curriculum materials at home, but from time to time, there will be some entertainment done, or listening to music while they do their homework. They can access Netflix,” Modlin said. “Parents can do job applications on there, so we really want to be able to open up the opportunities to our students.”

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