Cleveland Schools CEO talks about digital access, says devices ’still arriving’ week before online school year

Cleveland Schools CEO talks about digital access, says devices ’still arriving’ week before online school year
Cleveland Schools CEO talks about digital access ahead of online school year (Source: CBS News)

CLEVELAND (WOIO) - Cleveland Metropolitan School District CEO Eric Gordon said devices for students are still arriving just one week before the first day of remote classes for traditional students.

“They’re still arriving by truck daily,” Gordon said, adding every student in the district will have a device before the first day of classes Sept. 8.

Last spring, 40% of families didn’t have access to high speed internet and two thirds of families didn’t have a device to connect to online schooling.

In March, CMSD transitioned to online learning for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year.

The continuation of online learning into the 2020-2021 school year meant the district had to ensure all students were connected.

“That’s an $18 million investment we didn’t plan for, but that had to happen,” Gordon told CBS News.

Gordon also said there’s plans in the works to make sure all families have internet access once the pandemic is over.

“We’re working on a long-term, permanent solution to make internet a utility and not a luxury,” Gordon said. “I don’t plan to be the superintendent who goes door to door collecting hot spots back once Covid’s over and saying ’we’re unplugging you again.’ We have to solve this problem permanently.”

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