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Schoolgirl Has To Sit Online Classes By Graveyard Because Of Poor Internet

Amelia Ward


Schoolgirl Has To Sit Online Classes By Graveyard Because Of Poor Internet

A 15-year-old schoolgirl has been forced to sit next to a graveyard to attend her online lessons as her isolated house has no broadband.


Carmelita Rael has to complete her classes online due to face-to-face teaching being stopped because of coronavirus, but often, the only place she can get signal is while sat outside a local cemetery. Her home internet is intermittent due to her rural location so she's forced to hotspot from her phone.

Speaking to US news site, KDVR, Carmelita said: "I'm lucky if I can get through the whole day without having any problems with my Zoom. It's been hard."

At the moment, the only education she can get is via online lessons because of the pandemic, and her family live on a ranch surrounded by hills, meaning she can't get fibre optic or normal broadband. The family can barely even get signal on their mobile phones.

Her mum, Kimba Rael, is actually the principal of Carmelita's school, and she did sign up for specialist satellite internet.

Carmelita has to sit outside a cemetery and use her phone WiFi hotspot. Credit: KDVR
Carmelita has to sit outside a cemetery and use her phone WiFi hotspot. Credit: KDVR

But when the weather is either too cloudy or windy, the signal drops out and she's left with no access to her lessons, meaning her only option is to head back to the graveyard, which has clear access to nearby phone towers.

Kimba told the news outlet: "Right now, we have the dish on the side of the house, but if the clouds become too heavy, then you have no access.

"If the wind is blowing too strong, and its shaking, you don't have any access."

The Centennial School District Superintendent Toby Melster, who looks after the area's education, said that it's not just Carmelita who struggles.

Credit: KDVR
Credit: KDVR

Despite many of the students being given devices to work from, thanks to grants from the local authority, many of the kids are still lacking connectivity, rendering their new laptops and tablets useless for their learning

In fact, he said that one in five of his students can't access the education they are entitled to.

Mr Melster said: "Things are not getting done, and it's not necessarily their fault.

"I know it's causing some frustration, and aggravation, anxiety, not only with the students but with our teachers. I can't say enough about them."

Credit: KDVR
Credit: KDVR

Various tech companies are attempting to fix the problem so that students who have had their education interrupted can get a fix to keep up with the rest of their classes.

He's hoping that four or five large cellphone towers across the district will improve internet access - the only problem is, they cost a whopping $1.5 million (£1.2m).

Featured Image Credit: KDVR

Topics: World News, Coronavirus

Amelia Ward
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