Google is providing free internet across the state of California after Gov. Gavin Newsom announced schools would remain closed through the spring

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Leanne Francis, first grade teacher at Harvey Milk Civil Rights Academy, conducts an online class from her living room on March 20, 2020 in San Francisco, California.

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  • Google is setting up 100,000 WiFi access points to increase broadband access for the state of California after Gov. Gavin Newsom announced the state's schools would be closed for the rest of the academic year.
  • The broadband internet will be free for at least three months, and the tech giant is also providing thousands of students with Chromebooks — both to assist students with attending classes remotely. 
  • The partnership with Google comes as millions of students and educators are grappling with how to implement digital learning amid a statewide stay-at-home order.
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Gov. Gavin Newsom announced Wednesday that schools across California would most likely remain closed through the spring amid a statewide stay-at-home order and the coronavirus pandemic.

As part of an effort to improve digital learning from home, a Silicon Valley titan is stepping in to improve connection throughout the state.

During a Wednesday news conference, Newsom said Moutain View-based Google will set up 100,000 access points to increase WiFi and broadband internet, for free for three months, in California. The tech giant will also provide thousands of Chromebook laptops to students.

"We need more Googles," Newsom said during a news conference according to the San Francisco Chronicle. "This was a substantial enhancement."

The partnership with Google comes as 6.1 million students across the state's public school system are now adapting to remote learning via online programs amid California's stay-at-home order. Educators have been grappling with how to migrate lessons to online platforms — the San Francisco Unified School District had previously started using a free Google Classroom web service for the city's 57,000 students to access learning materials amid the shut down.

"We will definitely need to readjust and lower the expectations for what learning in the classroom will mean if it's done remotely," Stephanie Li, a third-grade teacher at Frank McCoppin Elementary School in San Francisco, told ABC7News on March 18.

Working parents have had their own challenge juggling remote work with keeping kids busy and diligent in schooling while confined in their homes to help in slowing the spread of the novel coronavirus.

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