Verizon pulls plug on OmniLynx wifi service provided by Huntsville City Schools

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) -  A partnership between Huntsville City Schools and Verizon Wireless is no more, stripping parents and students of an inexpensive wi-fi service option.

Wednesday, parents received the following notice from the school district that OmniLynx will be disconnected November 30.

Dear Subscriber:
We regret to inform you that your wireless service will terminate effective November 30, 2015 (the “Termination Date”). This termination of service and any resulting inconvenience has resulted from the service provider, Verizon Wireless (“Verizon”) and its decision to discontinue its support of the program. Needless to say, this circumstance is unfortunate and we are disappointed by Verizon’s decision – particularly in light of the fact that Verizon publicly endorsed and applauded the Omnilynx program less than one year ago.

As of the Termination Date and in accordance with your terms of service, you will no longer receive wireless services pursuant to the Omnilynx program, and we will no longer accept payment(s) for such services. Balances received in advance of service will be prorated and promptly refunded to you.

Thank you for your support of the OmniLynx program.

Living in Huntsville-Limestone County, Tricia Carlisle and her neighbors have an overloaded internet system that makes it impossible for students to complete their online homework. The OmniLynx system provided a major relief.

"We're zoned for Huntsville City Schools and I love the fact that they're doing the digital transition," said Carlisle. "I did, when i was able to participate in it. They're going to be leaving a lot of students behind because we can't participate."

Verizon Wireless released the following statement:

At Verizon, we have a long-standing commitment to improve the lives of individuals and the communities we serve. This includes providing students and educators access to affordable technology to enrich the learning experience. In keeping with this commitment, Verizon agreed to offer certain discounted services to the Huntsville City Schools.  The discounted services were intended to be used only by the school system.  Acting outside the scope of the agreement between Verizon and Huntsville City Schools, the school system made the discounted services available to the general public.  While Verizon has notified the school system it will support only those lines within the scope of the agreement, the company remains committed to supporting education in Huntsville and will continue to work in good faith with Huntsville City Schools to resolve the situation

With most homework assignments being on computer screens and tablets, Huntsville City Schools officials say they are actively looking at alternatives and other providers to revive the service.