Thursday, June 16, 2011
High speed Internet linking schools
By SUE WATSON
Workers are laying fiber optic cable in the Holly Springs area that will tie into a loop connecting Tupelo, Corinth, Highway 72, and back to Oxford, according to Don Randolph, superintendent of the Marshall County School District.
The service, by AT&T, will link schools and allow them to access and transmit more data and do it faster. The project is funded by federal dollars and some school district maintenance money, he said. It is targeted to be ready in time for the fall semester.
Four towers, of 100- to 120-feet height, will be installed in the school district areas of Galena, H.W. Byers, Potts Camp and Byhalia and link to a tower in Holly Springs, he said. Mary Reid School will receive its high-speed Internet from the Potts Camp campus wirelessly. The Internet speed and service will be increased because it will be beamed from the tower to the schools, Randolph said. The service will also increase the available band width so the Internet will operate at a higher speed at the schools and more students can be online at the same time.
The educational curriculum and assessments, lesson plans, testing, and remediation instruments will be available to the faculty, so service will be faster for the faculty, as well as for students.
“It’s fantastic,” Randolph said, “not only for students who are falling behind, but advanced students will have the opportunity to take advanced courses and move at a faster rate. This ties us into technology and makes services much quicker to the students.
“It will allow the technology staff to manage applications or problems for any individual school from our central office. It will also allow the district to distribute software to our schools from our central office much quicker. In essence, this will enable us to get maximum service from the 500 computers purchased this school year with federal grant monies.”
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