In a step that brings program commitments to nearly $4.2 billion, the FCC has committed $361 million in its latest wave of Emergency Connectivity Fund program support, the agency said. It said that this round of commitments would support 802 schools, 49 libraries and eight consortia that are approved to receive nearly 654,000 connected devices and over 313,000 broadband connections. Today’s seventh funding wave brings commitments to nearly $4.2 billion since the program was launched on June 29, 2021, supporting students, school staff and library patrons in 50 states, Guam, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and the District of Columbia.
“Today’s funding announcement will provide 700,000 more schoolchildren with the digital tools they need to connect with teachers and classmates,” said FCC Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel. “The Emergency Connectivity Fund is the single largest effort to close the Homework Gap by bringing connectivity and devices to students and library patrons. The need for this support is apparent in both rural and urban America, and I’m pleased to note that with this funding we are supporting communities stretching from Aniak, Alaska to New York City.”
The FCC said the funding can be used to support off-campus learning, such as nightly homework and virtual learning, to ensure students across the country have the necessary support to keep up with their education. It said that commitments made to date are supporting over 9,800 schools, 800 libraries and 100 consortia for more than 8.9 million connected devices and more than 4.7 million broadband connections. Today’s announcement includes nearly $155 million in commitments from Window 1 applications and more than $206 million in commitments from Window 2 applications, the agency said.
The FCC offers details about schools and libraries that have received funding commitments at https://www.fcc.gov/emergency-connectivity-fund.
The agency makes detailed information on the status of Emergency Connectivity Fund applications available in its Open Data Portal, including applicant details, requested funds, individual product or service details, funding commitment and funding disbursement information. Additional information on the Emergency Connectivity Fund program is available at: https://www.emergencyconnectivityfund.org. The FCC said the program is administered by the Universal Service Administrative Company, with oversight from and under rules unanimously adopted by the FCC.