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Viral Photo Shows Two Girls Studying Outside Taco Bell To Use Free WiFi

Mark Andrew

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  • A viral Instagram photo showed two girls studying outside a Taco Bell restaurant in California.
  • According to the original post, the youngsters, using their laptops and notebooks, were doing their homework.
  • The viral post sparked a discussion about the “digital divide” that some learners experience nowadays as distance learning becomes the new normal for many schools.

With distance learning now becoming the new normal because of the pandemic restrictions, an Instagram photo that recently went viral is showing us the harsh reality for some less-privileged students. The image, which has been captured right outside a Taco Bell store, featured two girls studying on the ground so they can access the restaurant’s WiFi for free.

According to Instagram user @ms_mamie89, the youngsters are students from the Salinas City Elementary School District in Salinas, California. The said post eventually gained numerous comments from netizens on social media and started a discussion, with many pointing out the sad fact that, yes, not all students have the luxury of having internet at home.

In her post, @ms_mamie89 captioned the heartbreaking image, writing:

“My mom sent me this picture today. These 2 young girls were looking for a place with WiFi to do their school work so they sat near Taco Bell to connect to the free WiFi.”

She continued:

“A lot of us don’t have to worry about having a proper WiFi connection or a quiet place to work from home. Every student from preschool through college should have free access to reliable WiFi especially now. What can we do as a community to pull together for students who need something as simple as WiFi in order to succeed?”

As of this writing, the photo has garnered almost 66,000 likes and around 1,000 comments on Instagram. It also made rounds on Facebook and Twitter.

Fortunately, the post resulted to something good as we later learn that the school eventually provided a hotspot for the girls. The district also assured that they have ordered additional hotspots to help struggling learners.

In an interview with KION, Salinas City Elementary School District board president Amy Ish said:

“The digital divide is very real and delays in receiving needed technology are a statewide concern, we are grateful the state is making technology a priority and look forward to receiving these hotspots in our district.”

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