A school on wheels: Wi-Fi opens up new learning doors on Iron Range school buses

Posted in Broadband

Buses in Chisholm and Mountain Iron-Buhl might be a little quieter this year. Both districts recently installed Wi-Fi routers as part of their community’s participation in the Iron Range Broadband Communities, a program organized by Blandin Foundation and supported by IRRRB and St. Louis County.

In Chisholm, two connected buses will be used for students with the longest bus rides and those traveling for activities. Mountain Iron-Buhl went all in and hooked up all seven of their school buses.

From a recent Hibbing Daily Tribune article:

It gives students already crunched for time the ability to complete schoolwork or study during time when they might otherwise be socializing, texting friends, or being a bit rowdy.

“I think it’s great for the kids and for the community,” said Dr. Janey Blanchard, Chisholm Public Schools superintendent. “This (technology) is what there kids have been raised on. On those long bus rides, it will allow them to get their homework done, do a lot of research, and they parents will be able to check on them.”

The system allows administrators to block inappropriate websites and limits a single student’s usage.

“Our first concern is for opportunities for those students who don’t have any access at home,” said Lisa Kvas, who co-chairs a local committee addressing broadband needs in the Mountain Iron area. “It will give students who don’t have access at home extra time to do their homework.”

Visit our Partner Directory to see additional broadband grants awarded to Iron Range communities.