Technology accounts for $16,605,000 in the EPISD 2016 bond. Included in this are laptops for students and teachers, network infrastructure for 29 campuses and an odd thing called “Neighborhood Wifi“:
“This proposal allows the District to mitigate the digital gap in ~50 neighborhoods. The EPISD school would serve as the source hub for the neighborhood, receiving Digital El Paso signal via joined city/school district networks. The school would transmit the signal wirelessly into neighborhood receivers, which would in turn transmit the signal to mesh receivers throughout the neighborhood. Each EPISD school can broadcast to an approximate 10 block radius around (but not including!) the campus for a cost of ~$10,000.”
For the less tech savvy, this means that the bond is going to pay to upgrade the infrastructure at schools and then EPISD schools are going work with Digital El Paso to broadcast internet access to ~50 neighborhoods around El Paso. Great news! So, the internet companies have decided to NOT upgrade their infrastructure and get internet out to these neighborhoods but EPISD is going to do all of that work for them! Then they are going to spend ~$10,000 (a year? A month? It doesn’t actually say) to broadcast that signal out to receivers in the neighborhood. Everybody wins. Well, except for the people who pay for their own internet already and now will be paying for someone else’s, as well.