Chula Vista City Hall. Photo courtesy of the city

Chula Vista will begin providing 2,000 WiFi Hotspot devices to families who need internet connectivity for their children to attend virtual classrooms.

The Chula Vista City Council voted unanimously Tuesday night to execute an agreement with T-Mobile and potentially other telecommunication providers for services and the devices.

Funding for the devices and service, totaling $650,000, will be paid by the Public Education Grant Fund budget and will not affect the city’s general fund.

Due to COVID-19 and the closure of all schools, the approximately 69,500 students throughout Chula Vista have had to shift to online learning. Students impacted by the digital divide are at an increasing disadvantage as access becomes the central barrier to success for school-aged children.

Families without internet service have also been difficult to reach with information about COVID-19, a city statement said.

“We are happy that we can provide a necessary service to a section of our community when they need us most,” Mayor Mary Casillas Salas said. “Having these devices and the service will allow students to continue their education and not be left out during this pandemic.”

— City News Service

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