The concept of schools look a lot different than they used to 50 years ago. High-speed connectivity is encouraging the adoption of 1-to-1 laptop and Bring-Your-Own-Device programs in schools, as well as reputable online learning programs like the Khan Academy, a well-known video lecture website for classroom instruction. Some teachers even use streaming platforms like YouTube for educational video content. But where technology and a broadband connection are having a huge impact in education are in the schools that reside in the most remote parts of the nation. These are communities where miles and miles of land might separate one household from its closest neighbor, or where severe weather like flooding, heavy snowfall, and icy conditions make it difficult to trek to school.
While expanding fiber-optic connectivity is not without its challenges, Craw-Kan is committed to bringing high-speed internet to our cooperative members and expanding into new territories as part of our growth. Closing the digital divide takes time and great effort, but we’ll get there. As part of that growth, we want to help bridge that divide, and one of the major infrastructures that needs high-speeds are rural school districts. Below are 3 prerequisites for improving connectivity to educational facilities.
- Every school needs access to fiber.
Fiber-optic connections are the only technology that can scale to meet bandwidth needs. It is also the most cost-effective way to deliver high-speed connectivity. Districts with fiber connections have 9 times more bandwidth.
- Bandwidth must be affordable.
Affordability is the number one barrier to schools acquiring the speeds necessary for digital learning. Schools with enough bandwidth for digital learning pay 1/3 the cost per megabit of those without sufficient connectivity. These schools also have Internet access budgets that are 2.8x larger per student than those on the wrong side of the digital divide.
- Every classroom must have robust Wi-Fi.
Wireless technology allows for connectivity to reach all the way to students’ devices and enables the rich digital learning that can transform our education system. Today 12% of schools have no Wi-Fi in their classrooms.
To learn more about how Craw-Kan is touching some of the most remote areas on the map—from education to healthcare to the economy and more—visit ckt.net and see how we’re dedicated to connectivity in rural America. If you’re interested in some of the fastest internet in the world, CLICK HERE!