Marion County Schools installing Wi-Fi in school parking lots for students

Marion County Public Schools is installing Wi-Fi in the parking lots of several of its schools so students who don’t have it at home can use it there.

“It literally is as easy as it sounds,” Marion County Schools Spokesman Kevin Christian said.

Students have not been able to go to school for weeks.

Now, Marion County is giving them a reason to.

“You drive into the parking lot of any of those 10 schools Monday through Friday 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.,” Christian said. “I would pull closer to the building. Once you’re in a good location, log on, download what you need.”

The district is partnering with Ocala to set up Wi-Fi in the parking lots of 10 of its schools.

“The City of Ocala stepped up and said, ‘You know what, we’ve got some equipment we think will work and let's install it and see what it does,” Christian said. “And boom, a few days later we have 10 schools that are going to have parking lot Wi-Fi.”

The Wi-Fi will go in at schools in some of the more rural areas of the county.

Right now, it is ready to go at Vanguard High, Dunnellon High and North Marion High, as well as North Marion Middle.

Six more schools need to be set up: Belleview Middle School, Forest High School, Fort McCoy School, Horizon Academy at Marion Oaks, Lake Weir Middle School and West Port High School.

A reminder: The school buildings are still closed. You cannot go inside.

School district leaders say parents and students told them they needed the Wi-Fi, so, they're happy to give it.

"When you are involved in public education, the creativity always flows no matter what's happening and I think this is a great example of people getting together to solve a problem,” Christian said.

The district hopes to have the Wi-Fi set up in all 10 schools before the end of the week.