Sussex County students are falling behind academically because of the slow internet connections in hundreds of Sussex County homes. Limited broadband access here has been well-known locally for more than  a decade.

Last spring, due to the Covid #19 Virus, our county students and their teachers spent school days on computer-based internet educational programs.  This fall, school days are scheduled for both on-line and on-campus learning. Students  with disabilities or have  family members with  health issues are being schooled long-distance. The other students will attend half-days in school and the rest of the school day at home online.

Recent scholarly studies have shown that spotty rural  internet service is having a destructive effect on students’  grades, homework completion, and digital skills. The scholastic setbacks of elementary, middle  and high school students directly affect academic standing, admission to higher learning institutions, and career opportunities. The educational gap will affect many students  for their entire life. The Wallkill Valley Rotary Club members believe that our rural students deserve better.

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The Wallkill Valley Rotary Member, Carolyn King, recently  applied for  a $1,500 Rotary Club Grant. Our Club  hopes to highlight the  educational negative divide for our students, as well as the need for an upgraded internet infrastructure for our business community.

In addressing a tiny percent of the school-based internet access problem, our rotary club has purchased fifteen (15)   hotspots (at $100.00 each)  to allow Internet  access via a wireless access point for a total of fifteen (15)  Hamburg, Hardyston, and Franklin elementary schoolers.

It is the Wallkill Valley Rotary’s  hope that Sussex County residents,  local service clubs, and community leaders will join us, in our effort to address this immediate educational concern, by sponsoring  students with  gifts of hotspots plus advocating  with us for an upgraded broadband internet access system for our Sussex County business community, also.

The Wallkill Valley Rotary can be reached on Facebook at: Rotary Club of Wallkill Valley NJ. The hyperlink to make a donation for the much needed hotspots is: