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NECAC hands out tablets for distanced learning, connectivity to kids in their apartments

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PALMYRA, Mo. (WGEM) -- A local organization is making sure some kids in the Tri-States have the technology they need to keep up in their now virtual classrooms.

NECAC officials said they're hoping to put new tablets into the hands of kids who live in their apartment complexes.

They said it's critical to for kids to have up-to-date technology so they can participate in school and society.

That's why they're giving away 250 tablets to tenants in their Northeast Missouri apartment complexes.

NECAC officials handed some of them out in Palmyra today.

"We were talking about getting him a computer for Christmas but thanks to you guys, that's already done, that's off the wishlist," said Stephanie Costello.

She is talking about the new tablet tablet that came Thursday along with a case and a micro SD card for her son free of charge.

Her son, Dawson, said older devices often can't keep up with newer software.

While he is most excited to use this new tablet for fun, he gets that he also have to use use for school.

"Maybe I could find like words to practice," said Dawson talking about studying for spelling tests.

NECAC Spokesman Brent Engel said they'll be able to Zoom, read, research, and more.

"The reason we're doing this is to give these kids an opportunity that a lot of other kids have to be able to use a lot of other kids have to be able to use electronic technology," said Engel.

He said that's especially critical for tenants they work with at their apartments.

"A lot of them come from middle to lower income families and sometimes don't have the advantages that some of their classmates do, so we want to make sure as many kids as possible are able to benefit from this technology," said Engel.

Costello said she's thankful for support like this from NECAC at times like this.

"I really like this outreach, it's really great for the community where we all kind of take care of everybody you know."

NECAC officials said they worked with worked with Missouri Gov. Mike Parson, Best Buy and CARES Act funding to make this possible.

They'll also be giving away devices to their tenants in Bowling Green on November 17th and Hannibal on November 21st.

Frank Healy

Multimedia Journalist at WGEM

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