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JACKSON, MI – With around 35% of students unable to afford or have access to internet service, Jackson Public Schools Superintendent Jeff Beal knew he had to do something to help with remote learning during the COVID-19 pandemic.

So, Wi-Fi service is on its way to those students via the district’s school bus fleet, allowing families free internet access to connect their devices to on days they aren’t participating in face-to-face school.

JPS spent $65,000 to outfit its full fleet of 52 buses with Wi-Fi hot spots. It’s deploying 15 of them into Jackson neighborhoods with high concentrations of families that can’t afford internet access.

Beal calls this initial deployment a “proof of concept,” with the idea that JPS might need to use all of its buses if moving entirely to remote learning is required because an entire building is put into quarantine during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We’re doing it

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