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FCC commits $37M connectivity fund to support schools, libraries

The Federal Communications Commission announced that it is committing $37 million in the 13th wave of Emergency Connectivity Fund program support, helping to close the Homework Gap. This latest round of funding is supporting over 170 schools, 30 libraries, and 4 consortia across the country, including for students in Alaska, Indiana, Mississippi, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, and Texas. Next week on April 28, the Commission will open a third application filing window that closes May 13, 2022 for eligible equipment and services to be delivered or received in the upcoming school year.

“This program has opened doors for thousands of students who lacked connectivity to get the tools they need to connect with their teachers and classmates,” said Chairwoman Rosenworcel. “Reliable and affordable access to broadband is a must for everyone, and especially for our students. I’m proud of the work we are doing to close the Homework Gap and pleased that we can offer this support for the next school year.”

During this third application filing window, eligible schools and libraries can submit requestsfor funding to purchase eligible equipment and up to 12 months of recurring services between July 1, 2022, and December 31, 2023. Given past demand, the third application filing window will likely be the last opportunity for schools and libraries to request funding before the remaining Emergency Connectivity Funds are exhausted.

The funding can be used to support off-campus learning, such as nightly homework, to ensurestudents across the country have the necessary support to keep up with their education. Total commitments to date have funded over 10 million connected devices and 5 million broadband connections. Today’s announcement includes nearly $27 million in commitments from Window 1 applications and over $10 million in commitments from Window 2 applications.

CT Bureau

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