image credit: Pxhere

Philadelphia launches $17 million free-internet campaign

As part of Philadelphia’s digital equity initiative, the city announced on Thursday that it will connect 35,000 households with K-12 public school students who lack internet access with up to two years of broadband service, along with devices like laptops or tablets.

The $17 million connectivity initiative, called PHLConnectED, will rely on programs from Comcast and T-Mobile to offer wired or mobile hotspot-enabled internet, at no cost to the families eligible for the program. Using data collected by the School District of Philadelphia, the Charter Schools Office, and internet service providers, the city will begin reaching out families in underserved or entirely unserved neighborhoods this month with the goal of connecting households before the school year starts. Philadelphia plans to begin its school year with remote-only learning on September 2.

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