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New program providing internet for low-income Greenfield students

Staff Report
Published: 4/15/2020 12:54:59 PM

GREENFIELD — To support remote learning for low-income students during the COVID-19 pandemic, the city has developed a collaborative plan to provide low-cost internet service.

According to a press release from Mayor Roxann Wedegartner’s office, the GCET Greenfield Equity Access Program, which launched this week, is offering free installation within GCET’s service area, and will allow for free access to the 25 megabits per second internet connection for the rest of the current school year. A $10 monthly charge will start after the initial free period.

This program is available to low-income Greenfield students whose families participate in at least one of the following programs: Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Medicaid, Supplemental Security Income, federal public housing assistance, veterans pension or survivors pension, Bureau of Indian Affairs general assistance, Tribally-Administered Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, Tribal Head Start and/or the Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations.

Funding to pay for the free installation of the necessary network equipment is provided by GCET and the city of Greenfield, the Greenfield Education Foundation, Greenfield Savings Bank and Gilmore & Farrell Insurance, according to the release.

“Lots of people worked together to make this happen,” said John Lunt, general manager of GCET. “This partnership showcases how great it can be when the public sector and private organizations get together to make something good happen.”

Additionally, the Greenfield School Department identified elementary and secondary education students who needed devices to access the program. The school district’s Chromebooks were cleaned, prepped and distributed to these students through a collaborative effort by staff.

“This is one more example of people working together during this challenging time for our city, to come to the aid of parents and students who need to take advantage of this service,” Wedegartner said.

Potential participants should call 413-775-6400 or visit gcet.net/equity for more information.


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