• NCC Highlights the Importance of Community Broadband Planning at Promise Neighborhoods National Network Conference (Dec. 20, 2021)
    • Students also need reliable broadband access to learn valuable skills necessary for employment. The Arkansas Computer Science Initiative has become a model for other states seeking to prepare students for college and participation in a high-skilled workforce. In a study of broadband and computer access across U.S. metros, the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia found that “expanding access to a broadband-enabled computer for prime-age workers who currently lack access could bring nearly 400,000 additional residents into the labor force.”
  • The Work is Far From Over: Updates on Local Broadband Data Collection Initiatives (June 29, 2021)
    • “Bowie and Miller Counties in the Texarkana area, which encompasses northeast Texas and southwest Arkansas, are partnering on research which will help local leaders develop a strategic plan. A survey of residents in the two counties will include questions about whether Internet is available in their location and ask if participants’ consider Internet access an essential service, akin to water and electricity. Collectively, the counties plan on investing $20,000-30,000 into the project.”
  • Disconnected Students Cannot Wait For Emergencies to Give Teachers the Support They Need (May 2021)
    • “Digital skills have become increasingly important for preparing students for jobs and higher education. The State of Arkansas recognized this need, becoming the first state to require all high schools to offer computer science classes in 2014. In the six years since the implementation, computer science course enrollment has increased by 800% and the initiative has become a model for other states. In the next year, Arkansas plans on increasing the initiative’s budget from $2.5 million to $3.5 million, to increase training for teachers.”

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