The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) on August 24 announced nearly $42 million in two new funding rounds through the Emergency Connectivity Funding (ECF) program to help close the “homework gap” for students that don’t have access to reliable broadband service and devices.
The new funding supports applications from all three application windows, supporting over 100,000 students across the country, including those in Arizona, Delaware, Idaho, Ohio, Texas, and Wisconsin.
“This is the time of year when families stock up on school supplies, and internet access should be on that list. Yet we still have too many students who lack the ability to connect with school after hours,” said FCC Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel.
“This latest round of funding will help more students get the online access they need for a successful education, and bring us closer to closing the Homework Gap,” she added.
The latest round of funding includes over $4.4 million from the first and second application windows, assisting five schools for the upcoming school year. The FCC also committed nearly $37 million from the third application window, supporting over 230 schools, 30 libraries, and five consortia.
The funding supports off-campus learning, such as nightly homework, to ensure students across the country have support to keep up with their education.
To date, the FCC has committed over $5.7 billion in ECF funding – supporting approximately 10,000 schools, 900 libraries, and 100 consortia and providing nearly 12 million connected devices and over seven million broadband connections.