Philly school district to address Wi-Fi dead zones in its buildings

Mike DeNardo
February 23, 2019 - 4:00 am
The School District of Philadelphia Headquarters.

KYW Newsradio, file

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PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — The school district is taking steps to address Wi-Fi dead spots in its buildings. 

Last summer, the district upgraded the internet connections at 22 schools. This summer, the plan is to rewire 94 additional schools to fix Wi-Fi dead spots, says district deputy chief information officer Bob Westall.

"We also have other schools that have computer labs, where maybe they put them in themselves 20 years ago and used the wiring available at the time. We're going to go and put fiber-optic cabling and make those labs go a lot faster than we already are." 

District CIO Melanie Harris says students at Philadelphia's two agricultural schools will benefit too.

"Not only can we have cameras in the barns so that students can watch the birthing seasons from home and participate in that, but they can also take iPads or other mobile devices into the barns and be studying or learning or collecting information there," Harris said.

Of the $3 million cost, 85 percent of it is expected to be paid for with federal money.  

The school board votes on the contract next week.