Families who qualify for free school lunches will be able to sign up for $9.95 a month high-speed Internet services from top cable providers.
Further, families eligible for free or reduced-price school lunches will be able to buy low-cost computers.
Specifically, households need at least one child that participates in the National School Lunch Program to be eligible for the reduced-cost high-speed Internet service.
The initiative is part of the Federal Communications Commission's effort to extend affordable broadband Internet access across the United States.
A third of Americans, some 100 million people, do not have high-speed Internet services in their homes, with cost being among the top barriers to broadband adoption.
A Commerce Department report on U.S. broadband adoption released on Wednesday found that only 43 percent of households with annual incomes below $25,000 had broadband access at home, while 93 percent of households with incomes exceeding $100,000 had broadband.
Eligible families will be able to sign up for the service during a three-year period starting in the spring in some areas, with the offer going nationwide by next September to coincide with the school year.
"Providing our children with a quality education requires much more than the teaching and learning that takes place inside of the classroom," said Michael Powell, head of the National Cable and Telecommunications Association.
Families can enjoy the discounted rate for two years. Source