Up to 10,000 Austin ISD students could be without technology when school starts

Education

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Up to 10,000 Austin ISD students could be starting school without technology come Aug. 18.

According to the Austin Independent School District, it all depends on when vendors can fulfill orders. Due to more people working from home and virtual learning kicking off in schools nationwide, there has been a larger demand for technology.

“Depending on our vendors’ ability to meet computer delivery timelines, this could be between 0 and 10,000 [students] would not yet have supporting technology from AISD,” the district said.

According to the AISD website, the district serves around 80,900 students in 129 schools. As of today, the district says it has enough computers to meet all known requests, however it is working to account for requests that haven’t been made yet.

What technology is on the way?

An order for 9,816 Chromebooks was placed last week, according to AISD, which will replace most of a previous order. Those laptops are expected to arrive in one to three weeks.

Another order for 9,000 Chromebooks was placed Tuesday, the district says. Those are scheduled to come in November.

Some computers will go to students who don’t yet have one and others will go toward replacing older Chromebooks.

As for WiFi hot spots, the district says it has 10,000 on hand in addition to the 7,000 already deployed. AISD says another order of 10,000 is also pending.

But the status of the laptops and how many are needed are changing by the day, the district says.

How can you help?

Austin ISD wants to remind parents to initiate or update their requests for technology in the Parent Cloud.

The district also asks graduated seniors who have not yet returned their Chromebooks to do so. In late July, AISD estimated 2,000 to 4,000 Chromebooks were unaccounted for, mostly belonging to seniors and students no longer in the district.

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