INVESTING IN BROADBAND MEANS INVESTING IN MINNESOTA’S FUTURE

BROADBAND

FACT SHEET
WHY INVEST?
Minnesota has fallen behind in access to high-speed broadband internet. Despite countless studies and task forces on broadband, our state has yet to make a serious investment in broadband. As a result, Minnesota ranks 23rd nationally in broadband speeds.

WHAT ARE MINNESOTA’S NEEDS?

Governor Dayton’s 2014 Task Force recommended a $100 million infrastructure fund to start addressing up to a $3.2 billion total investment need statewide. The $25 million investment in the House supplemental budget is an important first step toward meeting Minnesota’s broadband needs.

WHY IS BROADBAND IMPORTANT FOR OUR STUDENTS?
• Students in Greater Minnesota face issues with access to high-speed internet in schools, and to a larger extent, they can’t get connected with high-speed internet in their homes. • Both the US Chamber of Commerce and the National Broadband Plan note that broadband access improves the effectiveness of instruction and enhances learning through personalized/interactive activities and better tracking of student performance data. • 14% of broadband subscribers in MN get service solely for homework, but only 32% of Greater MN households are connected at speeds that most of the metro area enjoys (Source: Connect MN) • Schools are rapidly creating and using digital learning resources instead of purchasing traditional textbooks. Schools are also expanding networks to allow for students to bring their own internet enabled devices for educational purposes and are using more school-owned tablet devices in classrooms. These conditions are causing a steady increase in the amount of bandwidth needed by schools. • Students use school-owned tablets or their own mobile devices at the public library to access educational resources and complete homework after school, in the evenings and on the weekends. • Parents use school districts’ web-based systems to access information about their child’s educational progress and achievement, manage lunch accounts and participate in the school community.

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