Arizona Superintendent of Public Instruction Diane Douglas announced last week that she will host the first of at least two free statewide sign-up days for broadband access in Sierra Vista on Thursday, December 7.
“The Arizona Broadband for Education Initiative provides a once-in-a-generation opportunity for all schools in Arizona to sign up to upgrade to high-speed internet service at little or no cost,” Superintendent Douglas said. “Since the deadline to apply for these special funds closes in early 2018, we created one-stop-shop opportunities for schools throughout the state to learn how to take advantage of the funding, as well as help them get all of their paperwork filed in one day.”
As one of only 18 states that have millions of dollars available for this opportunity, this initiative provides K-12 schools and libraries in rural areas with the opportunity to upgrade their Internet, which may currently be slow or non-existent. Upgrading K-12 schools and libraries to high-speed broadband opens the door for teachers to utilize innovative digital learning in their classrooms. It also creates community anchor institutions, paving the way for Arizonans to access to telemedicine, online occupational and speech therapy, as well as distance learning. In order to make it easy for schools to take advantage of this program, the Arizona Broadband for Education Initiative – in conjunction with Superintendent Douglas, as well as Cochise County Superintendent Jacqui Clay and Coconino County Superintendent Risha VanderWey – are hosting two sign-up days at no cost to the schools.
The first event will take place in southern Arizona from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. on December 7, 2017 in Cochise County at 901 North Colombo Ave, Sierra Vista, AZ. The second sign-up day will take place in northern Arizona from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. on January 11, 2018 in Coconino County at 4000 North Cummings St, Flagstaff, AZ.
Both events will feature a team of broadband experts, including representatives from our partner non-profit EducationSuperHighway, who will provide tips, best practices and hands-on support for schools looking to upgrade their services, as well as assist applicants through the entire upgrade process. Superintendent Douglas, as well as the respective county superintendent at each event, will be on hand to show their unwavering support for closing the connectivity gap.
Schools interested in attending either event should email State E-Rate Controller Milan Eaton [email protected], while press inquiries can be directed to the press contact listed above.