Comcast offers $10 broadband to help poor children cross digital divide
That's the view of Dr. Robert T. McLaughlin, an education consulant with the state Department of Education and co-chairman of the Digital Opportunity Consortium, a nonprofit group working to expand the reach of the Internet.
About two years ago, to close the divide between the haves and have-nots, Comcast established Internet Essentials to provide nearly 1,000 New Hampshire families with Internet access for about $10 a month and a subsidized netbook — Dell or Acer — for $150. Originally, the family of any child who qualified for a free school lunch was eligible, but that was expanded to any family whose child qualified for a subsidized lunch, said Mark Reilly, senior vice president of government affairs for Comcast's Northeast Division.
Reilly said surveys of those families using Internet Essentials show 98 percent of the children were using it for homework and that grades improved for 94 percent of them. Additionally, 59 percent of the adults were able to find jobs by applying online.
Reilly said that, in Manchester, only 20 percent of those living in the inner city have Internet access at home. That compares to Bedford where 100 percent of residents have broadband, he said.
"Broadband is a critical ingredient for academic success," said Virginia M. Barry, commissioner of the state Department of Education. "I appreciate the vision of local school departments from the city of Nashua to the city of Portsmouth to support this initiative and encourage more families to get online. And we are grateful to Comcast for being a valuable partner in not only offering this important Internet Essentials program, but by providing digital literacy training as well. Having widespread Internet access in every home possible will ensure that our children have brighter opportunities in the future."
Since the program began, more than 220,000 low-income families nationwide — about 900,000 people — now have a broadband connection at home through the program.
READER COMMENTS: 1
- Outrage du jour Garcia, Sullivan and victimhood - 30
- Cyber Monday alarm: The sales tax monster rises - 7
- Mile marker: Londonderry trail’s first step - 0
- Definitely broken: City's winter parking ban - 2
- What Congress? Obama's 'easy way out' - 26
- Closing classrooms: Relief for Webster, Beech Street schools in Manchester.? - 2
- Unwanted professors: How does one get fired at UNH? - 15
- Bumped for Benghazi: A reporter is held accountable - 3
- Dangerous Iran deal: Weakening sanctions is senseless - 2
READER COMMENTS: 0
- Two charged with selling heroin in Nashua - 0
- 'Fugitive of the week' arrested in Hooksett - 0
- Dover police arrest 3 on drug charges - 1
- Sports Briefs: No miracle finish for Vonn - 0
- Browns QB Campbell cleared to face Pats - 0
- Bruins defenseman Boychuk's status unknown - 0
- SNHU seeks NCAA title - 0
- Wildcat gridders visit Maine in defining game for program - 0
- Manchester needs more police department argues in staffing report - 3
Reams threatens to sue county commissioners
'Fugitive of the week' arrested in Hooksett
Dover police arrest 3 on drug charges
Conway is heartened by word of her letter
Nashua hero up for Carnegie award
McWages: They're about value
Pot debate precedes legislative hearings
Dingman: 'I try to be a better person'
John DiStaso's Granite Status: Scott Brown says 'nothing is really changed' on political plans
Scott Brown still weighing options
- Should schools do more to police food and beverages consumed at school?
- Total Votes: 112