Comcast partners with state to offer free internet to low-income Kent students

As many as 4,750 households eligible for program to help with online learning

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A total of 4,750 K-12 student households in the Kent School District are eligible for the free internet program through Comcast and the state Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI).

Comcast announced Oct. 2 that it is partnering with OSPI to help launch the program to connect low-income households for online learning from home.

OSPI is taking advantage of Internet Essentials, a Comcast program designed for low-income families and individuals to acquire access to the internet, to support Washington’s K–12 Internet Access Program, according to a Comcast news release. The Comcast portion of the OSPI program will serve up to 38,000 qualifying low-income families with free internet service through the remainder of the 2020-2021 academic school year. This makes this program instantly available to 4,750 K-12 student households in the Kent School District.

“Our services have never been more important, and we’re doing everything we can to keep people connected to the internet during this unprecedented time,” said Rodrigo Lopez, Comcast Washington region senior vice president, in the news release. “We’re working to ensure that households are equipped for students to learn and stay informed at home and are proud to partner with Superintendent Chris Reykdal to help keep kids connected through our Internet Essentials program.”

Funding for the Washington’s K–12 Internet Access Program comes from the federal CARES Act. To help with COVID-related costs, Congress provided $195 million to Washington’s school districts and $21 million to OSPI for statewide coordination and support. The $195 million has already been provided to districts to address COVID-related needs.

For tech support, students, families and staff on school days from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. can contact internetaccess@kent.k12.wa.us, Microsoft Teams or phone 253-373-7030.

Editor’s Note: The contact information for the district was updated.




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