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Free/Lower-Cost Internet for Students

Introduction

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in mid-March asked internet service providers to sign a "Keep America Connected" pledge to help respond to the COVID-19 outbreak.  Many service providers immediately became a signatory to this pledge, whereby they have agreed to:

  • Not terminate residential or small business customers due to non-payment during the outbreak
  • Not charge late fees for the same
  • Open up their WiFi networks

for the next 60 days.  We do encourage you to read the actual pledge so that you understand the "fine print."  The district cannot be held responsible for any internet access charges or additional fees that you are charged.

As a result, many internet service providers (ISPs), both wired and wireless, have made free or low-cost internet available to students, and, in many cases, to teachers as well.

Local Offers

The district, fortunately, cannot possibly keep track of all of the wonderful companies who have stepped in to help students to continue learning through this crisis.  However, here are some offers of which the district is made aware.  Note that a listing on this page does not imply an endorsement of the provider or their service by the district.  Be a smart consumer, and find a service that works for you!

Please note that the information provided below is done as a courtesy only, and was accurate at the time of writing.  Providers constantly update plans, features, and COVID-19 efforts, so the information below may no longer be accurate.  Lackland ISD cannot be held responsible for any variance between what is written below and your actual service experience.

Wired Offerings

Google Fiber offers some wired connectivity in San Antonio, primarily near the Westover Hills area.  There are no free offerings, but Google Fiber has some lower-cost offerings for low-income families.  Click on the link to read more.

  • Wired
Read More about Google Fiber

Wireless Offerings

Bear in mind that many cell phones can be used to provide data to a tablet, iPad, or laptop.  Sharing your cell phone's data plan can be enabled in your phone's settings, and is often referred to as tethering, mobile hotspot, or simply data sharing.  Please be mindful that data caps and overages may still apply, but do read below for your carrier's support during COVID-19.

Verizon has waived activation fees on new lines as well as upgrade fees, but only through limited channels.  There are mobile hotspot benefits as well.  Verizon is also waiving charges for certain Lifeline customers, its plan for low-income families.  Click to read more.

  • Wireless
Read More about Verizon

T-Mobile is adding unlimited smartphone data for the next 60 days for customers who have plans with data.  They're also offering 20 GB of smartphone mobile hotspot data, but you must add it to your plan online or through their app.  Lifeline partners (T-Mobile's low-income plan) are also receiving some free data.  Click to read more.

  • Wireless
Read More about T-Mobile

Sprint has shifted metered data plans to unlimited for 60 days.  Mobile hotspot data plans have additional allowances.  Please be aware that Sprint has recently merged with T-Mobile, so that may impact the benefits available.  Click on "Read More" link for details.

  • Wireless
Read More about Sprint

AT&T is waiving overage fees on its Fixed Wireless Internet plans, a special type of service offered to some rural customers.  For cell phone customers, they're providing express free shipping as well as waived activation, upgrade, and restocking fees.

  • Wireless
Read More about AT&T (Wireless)