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Adrian Guerra, a pre-kindergarten student at Will Beckley Elementary School, attends school remotely from his family's Las Vegas home on Thursday, Nov. 19, 2020. (Photo courtesy the Guerra family)

The internet is about to get faster for thousands of Nevada children navigating remote learning.

Cox Communications, which is involved in a public-private partnership to bridge the digital divide, announced that it’s doubling the download speed for its low-income internet service called Connect2Compete. The move — increasing download speeds to 50 megabits per second — aims to ensure all students can fully participate in distance education.

Some families, especially those with multiple children, have lamented the effects of sluggish internet. Students have had trouble participating in video-conferencing platforms and using other online learning tools, which sets them behind academically.

The enhanced download speeds for the Connect2Compete program start Friday and run through June 30.

“Connect2Compete was created to augment the classroom and it has now transformed to power the entire classroom for many students,” Michael Bolognini, a vice president with Cox Communications in Las Vegas, said in a statement. “With virtual learning continuing into the coming months, Connect2Compete provides a critical connection for thousands of local children learning remotely during this pandemic.”

The company is part of the Connecting Kids coalition that mobilized over the summer to ensure all Nevada students had internet access and a laptop or Chromebook for virtual learning.

Clark County School District students have not returned to brick-and-mortar schools since mid-March when COVID-19 prompted closures. Remote learning will continue at least through early January.

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