Sprint Provides Free Broadband Service to More Than 4,200 Illinois Students
Sprint Donation Totals More Than $8 Million to Help Bridge the Digital Divide Under the White House Initiative, ConnectED
CHICAGO (BUSINESS WIRE), December 13, 2016 - Today, Sprint (NYSE:S) was joined by Lieutenant Governor Evelyn Sanguinetti and Illinois Public School faculty to announce new investments to Illinois Public Schools under the White House initiative, ConnectED. The high-speed LTE broadband service Sprint brings to these schools will help more than 4,200 Illinois students stay connected at-home through a Wi-Fi hotspot. The value of Sprint’s service during the term is estimated at more than $8.09 million.
“Without internet access, millions of children, especially minority students living in low-income communities, would be left behind. This is an important step to close the digital divide,” said Lieutenant Governor Evelyn Sanguinetti. “Thank you to Sprint for their leadership and generosity in helping us close that divide.”
Last year, Sprint and Governor Rauner announced the first few Illinois Public Schools to take advantage of the ConnectED initiative, where Sprint provided more than $3 million in free broadband service. This announcement includes additional Illinois Public Schools with a larger investment and a larger number of students impacted. Sprint pledged to provide wireless broadband connectivity for 50,000 low-income K-12 students across the U.S. as part of the White House initiative, ConnectED – a public and private effort to get technology into classrooms and into the hands of teachers and students to help bridge the “digital divide.”
"Our partnership with Sprint and the ConnectED program has helped us close the opportunity gap at Leyden and strengthen our 1:1 teaching and learning environment,” said Dr. Nick Polyak, Leyden School District 212 Superintendent. “By providing Wi-Fi access to students whose families might not be able to afford it, we are giving every student the same access to information, the same tools to connect and collaborate, and the same chance to be successful."
Sprint is proud to provide free broadband service to the following Illinois Public Schools:
In addition to the ConnectED initiative, Sprint has donated $250,000 to fund an expansion of the Connect Chicago Challenge – citywide effort to make Chicago the most skilled, most connected, most dynamic digital city in the world. The Connect Chicago Challenge will increase digital access through comprehensive programming, outreach and public access in neighborhoods throughout the city.
“Sprint has a long history of supporting initiatives that use innovative technologies, services and devices to enhance educational opportunities,” said Jim Mills, Sprint president of Illinois and Wisconsin. “During this critical time for high school students, Sprint is proud to provide free broadband services so that there are no interruptions in their learning.”
For students who do not have access to the Internet at home, it significantly limits opportunities to complete homework assignments, research next-level learning, and apply for jobs. In the state of Illinois, about 54 percent of the students live in low income households and qualify for free or reduced lunch.
To learn more about the Sprint ConnectED program visit: www.sprint.com/connected.
Sprint (NYSE: S) is a communications services company that creates more and better ways to connect its customers to the things they care about most. Sprint served 60.2 million connections as of Sept. 30, 2016 and is widely recognized for developing, engineering and deploying innovative technologies, including the first wireless 4G service from a national carrier in the United States; leading no-contract brands including Virgin Mobile USA, Boost Mobile, and Assurance Wireless; instant national and international push-to-talk capabilities; and a global Tier 1 Internet backbone. Sprint has been named to the Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI) North America for the past five years. You can learn more and visit Sprint at www.sprint.com or www.facebook.com/sprint and www.twitter.com/sprint.
Yui Namiki, 312-523-1532