Lawrence County school system moving forward with Wi-Fi on buses

 Lawrence County school system is moving foward with the plan to install Wi-Fi on select school buses and parking them at each school in the county

The emergence of COVID-19 back in early spring and the closing of school systems back in March has changed a lot in recent months. 

Plans are to resume school like normal in the fall, but there have already been changes to that with the induction of now virtual or blended classes as opposed to just on-site school. 

But that's not all that is changing. 

School systems are looking into various new ways they can help their students in the future and that includes Lawrence County. 

One of the new plans that has been discussed in recent board meetings has been installing Wi-Fi on school buses. That's not only a plan, but one the school board is actively pursuing. 

"This is something that we believe is really going to benefit our students," said Lawrence County Superintendent Dr. Jon Bret Smith. "We're hoping to have it ready to go by this school year." 

Of course the main reason for installing the Wi-Fi is as a contingency in case schools were to close again. But it's also something that the board feels will be valuable even if schools are open as normal. 

"Yes our main focus is as a contingency in case we can't have school like normal," Smith said. "But we're going to have it either way. We feel this will be an important tool for our students to have going forward." 

Smith said that the Wi-Fi will be free to use, but will only be on select buses. However, they plan to install it on at least one bus parked at every school. 

While it will create a significant cost, the board plans to pay for it using funding from the cares act, meaning they will not have to do any additional fund raising. 

The school also plans to boost their Wi-Fi strength, meaning you would only need to be parked at the school to use it. 

"The outbreak of Covid and the fear of another outbreak has made schools realize they need to have plans," Smith said. "A lot of schools around the state are looking into what virtual ways we can use to help our students succeed. We're right there with them."

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