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FCC commits additional $421 million in off-campus learning support to bridge the pandemic “homework gap”

November 10, 2021

A $7.17 billion Emergency Connectivity Fund (ECF) was established by the 2021 American Rescue Plan Act to help ease the educational impact on students of school closures in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. While much instruction transitioned to an online environment, many students were inadequately equipped to properly participate. To address issues with access to technology, the program provides funding to schools and libraries across the nation to purchase connected devices and equipment needed for students to use off-campus. The Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) latest commitment of $421 million brings the program’s total funding to more than $3 billion.

The ECF has approved funding for more than 7,000 schools and libraries to purchase more than 6.8 million connected devices and 3.5 million broadband connections. Specifically, funding may be used to purchase laptop and tablet computers, Wi-Fi hotspots, modems (including air cards), routers, and modem/router combination devices.

The interactive map below shows the FCC’s total committed funding by state.

fcc, coronavirus, broadband, education