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95K Alabama students connected through free internet voucher program

They've got masks and social distancing to contend with -- or hours staring at a screen while virtual learning. It's no wonder some kids may get distracted.
They've got masks and social distancing to contend with -- or hours staring at a screen while virtual learning. It's no wonder some kids may get distracted.
Published: Oct. 14, 2020 at 9:29 AM CDT
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MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - About 95,000 Alabama students receive free internet through the state’s free internet voucher program.

Alabama Broadband Connectivity for Students program gives free internet access for families with students on free or reduced lunches. The vouchers were first mailed out to in September.

About 200,000 to 300,000 households are eligible to receive a voucher. ADECA could not provide an exact percentage of the number of vouches redeemed. But a spokesperson said about 58,000 households have redeemed a voucher.

“I think we certainly would like to see more families participate. There are a lot of families who are eligible for the program that we would like them to redeem their vouchers or to contact us if they’ve lost or misplace their vouchers,” said Maureen Neighbors, who is the chief of ADECA’s Energy Division.

Neighbors said Alabama is the only state providing a program like this which connects with numerous providers.

“Our program is unique in that we are statewide, and we are doing it with numerous providers,” she said. “So this has allowed us to really increase our reach and and hit parts of the state that we might not otherwise been able to provide service to.”

Copyright 2020 WSFA 12 News. All rights reserved.

Original Story: https://www.wsfa.com/2020/10/13/k-students-connected-through-free-internet-voucher-program/

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