Students receive online access to help gain competitive edge in education.
MCLEAN, VA — Kajeet, the only wireless service provider dedicated solely to providing safe and affordable mobile connectivity for students, announced today a partnership to deploy Kajeet SmartSpot® devices to Detroit Public Schools to bridge the digital divide. A total of 450 portable Wi-Fi hotspots, enabling students to have access to essential academic and education resources on the Internet anytime, anywhere, are currently being deployed in eight schools as part of the district’s take-home Netbook program. The Kajeet SmartSpot program, which was awarded through a competitive application process, is paid for by a series of grants.
“We are encouraged that the district is investing in its students’ education to help improve the economic growth of the community,” said Daniel Neal, CEO and founder of Kajeet. “Detroit is bridging the digital divide, in spite of economic issues, and leading the charge for urban districts nationwide.”
As one of the country’s largest school districts, Detroit is confronting the same issue as many other schools in safely and affordably connecting students off campus with student-issued devices. Currently, 70 percent of the district’s students do not have Internet access once they leave school. The Kajeet SmartSpot™ offers an affordable and simple option to close the digital divide without requiring the individual families to apply for at-home broadband or the student to even be at home.
“As a teacher, if only 30 percent of a class has Internet access, it limits what can be assigned to students outside of class, especially considering that many textbooks are now online,” said Mark Bartoski, executive director of technology infrastructure and design at Detroit Public Schools. “With Kajeet, we know our program costs upfront and can report on how the students are using the Internet. We also have a simple way to deploy the devices with our existing Netbooks.”
Detroit students in grades 8 through 12 enjoy take-home Netbooks, and students in grades 6 and up have access to Netbooks in school. The Kajeet SmartSpot™ can be customized and managed in real time by the schools, giving teachers or administrators the ability to set access hours and filter out non-educational content keeping students on-task and controlling costs.
“We are pleased to provide this opportunity to our students and remove obstacles that impede their ability to extend their learning capacity beyond the classroom,” said Diane Jones, chief information and strategic officer at Detroit Public Schools. “This tool provides us with a simple way to assist our teachers by removing a barrier for students.”
Kajeet, the only wireless service provider dedicated solely to providing safe, mobile connectivity for students, is bridging the digital divide in school districts across the country. Kajeet provides a safe, affordable mobile broadband solution that connects economically disadvantaged students to the resources they need to complete required assignments and projects outside of school. The Kajeet SmartSpot®, a portable Mi-Fi hotspot, combined with the innovative Sentinel® cloud portal, enables administrators and teachers to provide CIPA-compliant, customizable filtered Internet access that keeps students focused on school work and without worry of data abuse. Kajeet products and services, which operates on both the Sprint and Verizon network, are protected by the following issued U.S. patents 8,929,857; 8,918,080; 8,774,755; 8,774,754; 8,755,768; 8,731,517; 8,725,109; 8,712,371; 8,706,079; 8,667,559; 8,644,796; 8,639,216; 8,634,803; 8,634,802; 8,634,801; 8,630,612; 8,611,885; 8,600,348; 8,594,619; 8,588,735; 8,285,249; 8,078,140; 7,945,238; 7,899,438; 7,881,697. Other patents are pending.
About Detroit Public Schools
Detroit Public Schools is creating Neighborhood-Centered, Quality Schools at 97 campuses with a mission to provide a comprehensive educational experience that is high-quality, challenging and inspires all students to make a positive contribution to society. DPS offers a wide variety of educational advantages to students and parents including Individualized Learning Maps for all students. New this year, arts/music and sports leagues for boys and girls are being offered at every elementary/middle school. Prekindergarten offerings have been expanded to 70 schools across the district for all qualified 4-year-olds. Twenty-one schools are now open as Community Schools, offering extended hours and services. Students in grades 8-12 enjoy take-home Netbooks and students in grades 6 and up have access to Netbooks in school. An outstanding Fine Arts program with instrumental music, vocal music and dance is also offered. Ongoing advantages include eight parent resource centers, Parent University and additional parenting programs, enhanced safety initiatives, a district-wide Customer Service focus, nine Detroit Rising College Preparatory Schools and DPS-authorized charter schools led by educators with proven track records of raising achievement. In 2013, DPS graduates earned more than $146 million in grants and scholarships.