The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) on July 27 committed an additional $77 million in two new funding rounds through the Emergency Connectivity Program (ECF) that aims to help close the “homework gap” for students across the United States.
The funding supports applications from all three application windows, supporting over 175,000 students across the country, including those in Colorado, Kansas, Ohio, Tennessee, Puerto Rico, and Washington.
“The Homework Gap is real. Too many kids still lack access to the internet after the school day,” FCC Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel said in a statement. “We’re working hard to fix this, and this program is providing millions of students with the essential digital tools they need to succeed in school.”
The funding includes over $2.5 million from the first and second application windows providing support for six schools and two libraries for the upcoming school year. For the third application window, the FCC is committing nearly $75 million to support over 150 schools, 20 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.
The total ECF funding committed to date is over $5.6 billion – supporting approximately 10,000 schools, 900 libraries, and 100 consortia and providing nearly 12 million connected devices and over seven million broadband connections.