High school teens kick start Wi-Fi fundraiser for Valley elementary school students

Destiny Viator

The group says as small as an $80 donation will pay for an Alhambra family’s Wi-Fi for the whole school year.

PHOENIX — Coronavirus is still making the return to the classroom a challenge for some Valley schools. 

So when a small group of local teens found out some of those students couldn’t afford internet at home, they started working on a solution.

Neha Balamurugan, Tony and Lauren are the seniors behind the Break Digital Divide program. They’re raising money to help preschool through fourth grade families in the Alhambra Elementary School District pay for internet. 

Mandi Bilyou, the associate superintendent for operations in the Alhambra Elementary School District, said a lot of their families struggle to pay for Wi-Fi.

“It’s definitely a hardship and a choice they have to make between taking care of their daily needs and/or purchasing internet,” Bilyou said.

The need in their school community was

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Back to school an adjustment for teachers, students around state

Destiny Viator

After months of intensive planning for students to return to classrooms as safely as possible in the current pandemic, many schools in Maine reopened to students last week. We stopped in to see how it’s going.

Mt. Blue Middle School, Farmington, Regional School Unit 9

School librarian Sherry Wyman teaches sixth-grade students how to access the library website during language arts class at Mt. Blue Middle School in Farmington on Thursday. Daryn Slover/Sun Journal Buy this Photo

The hallways at Mt. Blue Middle School in Farmington were quiet and empty. Orange markers painted on the floor reminded students to practice social distancing and flat screen TVs mounted to the walls streamed COVID-19 notices.

Sixth grade teacher Tracy Knapp sat in front of her laptop, alone in her classroom with her head sandwiched between a model of the Earth and the sun as she lectured her online students.

The middle school

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3,000 students haven’t logged on for the first week of school in Salt Lake City

Destiny Viator

And one big reason is that many still don’t have the technology needed to do so.

“I really am alarmed at how many kids don’t have access,” said Melissa Ford, the president of Salt Lake City School District’s board of education. “We can’t just leave them behind.”

Sam Quantz, chief information officer for the district’s IT department, told the school board during its meeting this week that he had 700 unfulfilled requests for computers as of Tuesday.

Those are largely in the district’s three high schools — after it prioritized getting devices to elementary and junior high kids first — and on the west side of the city. West High, for instance, has the most outstanding need, with 320 kids still needing access to technology.

East High has 200 pending requests and Highland High, Quantz said, is now mostly covered. The district doesn’t have enough computers for each student to

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At School or at Home, CompTIA Educational Resources Available to Aspiring Technology Professionals and Their Instructors

Destiny Viator

DOWNERS GROVE, Ill., Sept. 16, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — With the 2020-21 academic year underway amid much uncertainty, CompTIA, the nonprofit association for the global technology industry, is providing a degree of certainty for students interested in careers in information technology (IT) and the teachers and instructors who are educating them.

CompTIA today announced the availability of a large selection of digital educational resources on IT careers to inspire students and assist teachers, whether instruction is happening in a physical classroom, via remote learning or a combination of both.

“We want students to have all the information they need to learn about the broad selection of career options available with technology companies and in technical roles in virtually every other industry,” said Todd Thibodeaux, president and CEO of CompTIA. “We’re  committed to providing our partner educators and institutions with the resources and support they need in today’s classroom to

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School girls encourage people donate gadgets to help needy students

Destiny Viator

a group of people standing around a table: Pic/ ANI Twitter

© Provided by Mid-Day
Pic/ ANI Twitter

A group of five girls in Chandigarh have taken an initiative to collect electronic devices from people as donations for In an effort to help needy students to attend online classes. Speaking to ANI, Saachi Ahuja, one of the girls said, “We’ve given gadgets to 21 girls. It’s helping them to attend online classes as schools are closed.” These school-going teenagers have come together to encourage youngsters to donate their gadgets like mobile phones and laptops for underprivileged girls who cannot afford these gadgets for online learning.

It has been almost four months that all the schools have been closed due to the COVID-19 induced lockdown which has pushed students to opt for e-learning. Under the initiative ‘Prerna – for you and us’, these girls approach the youngsters to donate gadgets and provide the same to underprivileged girls. These girls have also been

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Students step in to refurbish computers as school needs rise

Destiny Viator

A middle school IT club has found a way to use their skills to revamp old computers at a time when distance learning has made such technology indispensable.

Penguin Corps is a Linux club at the charter school Aspen Academy in Savage. Linux clubs provide a space for students to learn how to install and use open-source software. The students are using that knowledge to refurbish old computers for their classmates.

With the school opting for hybrid learning, the need for computers skyrocketed. 

“These kids very enthusiastically caught the open-source bug and took on the challenge of wanting to help their fellow students,” said Stu Keroff, a social studies teacher who directs the club.

Four hands work on two laptops.

Two Aspen Academy students and members of the Penguin Corps computer club work on donated laptops in Savage, Minn., on Wednesday. The club repairs donated computers for families that need computers for distance learning.

Evan Frost

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T-Mobile pushes internet for virtual school

Destiny Viator

NEW YORK (AP) — T-Mobile is pushing to offer internet service to schools that are doing online learning with a program aimed at low-income students who don’t have access. In the U.S., millions of students don’t have high-speed internet or computers at home — a difficult enough situation when it was just about trying to get homework done, but a much bigger problem when many school districts have moved part or all of the school day online during the coronavirus pandemic.

These undated photos provided by T-Mobile shows, from left, T-Mobile executives Matt Staneff and Mike Katz. T-Mobile is pushing to offer internet service to schools that are doing online learning with a program aimed at low-income students who don’t have access.   (T-Mobile via AP)

© Provided by Associated Press
These undated photos provided by T-Mobile shows, from left, T-Mobile executives Matt Staneff and Mike Katz. T-Mobile is pushing to offer internet service to schools that are doing online learning with a program aimed at low-income students who don’t have access. (T-Mobile via AP)

School districts are spending big to address the crisis. The L.A. Unified School District is investing $100 million in online

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N.J. high school senior giving back to students with free computer science lessons

Destiny Viator

For West Windsor teen Samvit Agarwal, it started off with a love for computer science.

It turned into 300 volunteers, 250 students and plenty of happy parents.

Agarwal’s non-profit organization, CS Remastered, guides kids from grades 3 to 12 with free computer science education. It has been the goal of the organization since it was launched in late 2018, but the coronavirus pandemic has made Agarwal and his team of volunteers more driven to give back.

“I’ve been interested in technology for a long time and I began by helping kids in the neighborhood out with their technical projects,” the 17-year-old student said. “I felt as though a lot of kids were interested in technology but didn’t have the resources to start. I figured it would be great to create a program for kids to learn computer science and technology directly through CS Remastered.

“Before the pandemic, we taught in

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On first day of online school, Olathe system shuts down

Destiny Viator

At 7:30 a.m. Tuesday, thousands of Olathe students sat at their computers, ready to start the first day of school and meet their new teachers via a Zoom video chat.

But within a few minutes, many realized they had been blocked from doing so.

“At first I thought that maybe the internet wasn’t working in our whole neighborhood, since everyone was trying to get online. But then we figured out that (the district system) must have crashed,” said Cassie Collar, who has a middle schooler and high schooler in the Olathe district.

District spokesman Cody Kennedy said 50,000 people were attempting to log in to the online portal StudentVue on the first day of school. But the system was designed to accommodate about 30,000 users. It soon crashed.

In an email to parents, district officials said there were more than 160,000 attempts made at logging into the system.

“We know

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Berkeley County students will have technology in time for new school year | West Virginia

Destiny Viator

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. — There’s good news for Berkeley County students because technology — devices as well as hundreds of Wi-Fi hotspots and other internet connectivity options — will be available to them when the new school year begins Sept. 8.

Superintendent of Schools Patrick K. Murphy credited the district’s technology department for having worked since early summer to ensure students would have needed devices.

“Because of their planning, purchasing and deployment, Berkeley County Schools is ready to launch both computer and internet devices for staff and students for the Return to Learn school year,” Murphy said in an email.

“All of our students will have a device for use in either the brick or click pathway,” he said.

The district’s back-to-school plan includes two options — in person (brick) and remote (click) — for instruction, five days per week.

Students who will be attending in person will return to school

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