Almost 5,000 CVUSD families relying on district for wifi this semester

Olivia Sandusky

Families at Coachella Valley Unified School district prepare for the first day of school, not knowing when they’ll be allowed to return to campus.

“I feel nervous but mostly excited,” said Kimbella Villa, a second grader.

“It’s totally different, I don’t know what to do. I’m raising five kids, grandkids, and they’re all scared of this coronavirus, they want to come back to school, but not in this way,” said Eunice Godinez, a parent.

Starting around 6:30 Thursday morning, parents lined up at schools across Coachella Valley unified to get Ipads and meals for their students.

But many still have concerns over internet connection.

“I really want them to learn and I don’t want them to stay back,” said Godinez.

In a recent survey, the Coachella Valley Economic Partnership says only 39 percent of homes in Thermal have internet service, followed by 42 percent in Oasis, and 63 percent in Mecca, leaving many families to rely on the district for help.

And some are still without wifi just a day ahead of the first day of school.

“We’ve passed out about 3,000 hot spots, we’ve ordered 1,500 more because our families tell us they need more. In the meantime, we will be sending out our buses with the mobile wifi attached to them to certain areas in our district boundaries,” said Maria Gandera the CVUSD Superintendent.

And for now, staff and families say the online route seems like the best decision for the district.

“I don’t want my kids to get sick,” said Godinez.

“School is going to look different. That doesn’t mean it’s going to look or be bad. It just means it’s going to be different,” said Gandera.

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