The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is investing $46.3 million in a new round of funding for the Emergency Connectivity Program (ECP), which provides digital services for students across the country.
The latest round of funding will support nearly 125,000 students nationwide, including students in Arizona, Georgia, Illinois, Massachusetts, Ohio, Oregon, and Washington. It also supports approximately 250 schools and school districts, 13 libraries and library systems, and two consortia.
“For many students, the start of the school year brings renewed concerns about access to the digital tools that they need to succeed in school. That’s why we’re pleased to announce another round of funding to help close the Homework Gap just in time for students to head back to class,” FCC Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel, said in a statement.
The funding can be used to support off-campus learning to ensure students across the country have the necessary support to keep up with their education, the FCC said.
The ECP, which launched in 2021, provides schools and libraries with three different “application windows” to apply for support. This latest round of funding will go towards applications from the third window.
The FCC to date has approved nearly $6.86 billion in ECP funding – providing support to approximately 18 million students, 11,100 schools, 1050 libraries, and 120 consortia. In total, through the ECP the FCC has provided nearly 13 million connected devices and more than eight million broadband connections.