By Bob Ehle – Jason Taylor contributed to this story
Missouri Governor Eric Greitens made an announcement at the Holliday C-2 School in northeast Missouri’s Monroe County Monday.
“I’m very proud to come here to announce to you that today we’re taking the first step to bringing high quality, broadband internet access to every school in the state of Missouri” said Greitens.
With a group of teachers, students, community members and a number of lawmakers on hand, Greitens said this will be a win for both teachers and students.
“This is a major investment, $45 million investment to make sure that we’re bringing quality, high speed broadband internet access to every school throughout the state of Missouri. It’s being led by the state of Missouri, but we’re also partnering with private sector partners like the EducationSuperHighway, and with the administration in Washington D.C. to make this happen.”
EducationSuperHighway is a San Francisco based nonprofit focused on upgrading internet access in public school classrooms.
Greitens said teachers in rural locations such as Holliday need to have the same resources that schools in population centers have to teach students.
“When you see here in a place like Holiday with great teachers like this, they need to have the tools and the resources in order to make sure that every kid in the state of Missouri is able to live up to their god given potential and to pursue their passions.”
Holliday School Administrator Daniel Liebhart thinks the boost in online availability provides new opportunities for rural schools.
“Just having the broadband availability to our students, having uninterrupted internet service, researching things online, online classes, any of those benefit our children” said Liebhart. “And then the part about the cost, where it wouldn’t cost anything to our district would be huge. You come to a small school like Holliday puts the little town on the map. The turnout was excellent. A huge percentage of our town was here to support this.”
Of the $45 million amount, the state would pay $6 million. That sum is currently included in the new budget that’s being considered in the Missouri House.