Lee’s Summit R-7 partners with EveryoneOn.org to increase Internet access among families
The Lee’s Summit R-7 School District is partnering with EveryoneOn to increase home access to the Internet among families. EveryoneOn is a national non-profit organization created to eliminate the digital divide by making high-speed, low-cost Internet service accessible to all unconnected Americans.
Nationally, one in five Americans do not use the Internet, according to EveryoneOn officials, with the non-users disproportionately coming from low-income communities. These populations risk becoming increasingly isolated from our digital society because they lack access to the Internet.
During August, approximately 95 percent of Lee’s Summit R-7 families participated in a survey about Internet access in the home. Among families taking the survey, around 95 percent indicated they have wireless Internet access, and 2.6 percent stated they have smartphone or desktop access only. A total of 2.4 percent of families — approximately 406 students or 307 homes — have no Internet access. Of families with students qualifying for free or reduced lunches, around 84 percent have wireless access, 7 percent have smartphone or desktop access and 9 percent have no Internet access.
With the Lee’s Summit R-7 School District’s launch of Connect2Learn, which provides a Google Chromebook to each student, the partnership with EveryoneOne is especially timely. Working with partnerships with leading Internet service providers, EveryoneOn is able to offer free Internet service or service for $9.95 per month for individuals and families qualifying based on income. For example, families living in the Comcast area who qualify for free/reduced lunch are eligible to receive Internet service for $9.95 per month with no hardware or installation fees.
In addition, Internet service is available for all families regardless of income for $10 or $20 per month, not including the purchase of necessary hardware through T-Mobile.
Lee’s Summit R-7 staff members are encouraging those without Internet service to check out the low-cost plans available through EveryoneOn. If you know of families or individuals without Internet service, please also consider sharing this information with them.
To determine which reduced-price Internet offers are available in your area, visit EveryoneOn.org/lsr7 or text “connect” to 215-45. You may also call (855) EVRY1ON. You will be asked to provide your zip code and to answer questions related to family income levels, such as eligibility for the free/reduced school lunch program. For example, a family living within the 64086 or 64063 zip code with a child(ren) qualifying for free/reduced lunch program would qualify for several low-cost Internet options ranging from $9.95 to $20 per month.
In addition to working to provide Internet access, EveryoneOn provides reduced-price digital devices and free computer and Internet courses.