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Schrader Announces More Funding for Oregon Schools and Libraries to Connect Students to the Classroom

U.S. Congressman Kurt Schrader (OR-05) is pleased to announce the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is releasing a fourth funding wave from the Emergency Connectivity Fund (ECF), which includes nearly $576,000 for Oregon schools and libraries. This brings the state’s combined total funding through this program to over $59.6 million to date.

Congressman Schrader secured the ECF in the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 to support schools and libraries with off-campus learning, such as nightly homework and virtual learning, to meet the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic. Costs covered by the ECF program include purchases of laptop and tablet computers; Wi-Fi hotspots; modems; routers; and broadband connectivity purchases for off-campus use by students, school staff and library patrons.

“Remote and online learning became critical during this COVID crisis for students to connect to the classroom, continue their education and engage with their teachers, but the pandemic also revealed the struggles many Oregon families and schools face with limited resources and internet access, especially in rural communities,” Rep. Schrader said. “The Emergency Connectivity Fund has proven to be a key program in the American Rescue Plan, as it helped schools and libraries support student learning through the most uncertain, challenging days of the crisis. This latest funding wave will help them continue to meet demands to provide the tools and services our students and communities need.”

“Far too many students lack the connections they need to get online and stay connected to their teachers. Thankfully, Congress gave us the tools through this program to make a real difference in our communities as we work to close the Homework Gap and help schools and libraries engage in online learning,” said FCC Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel.

The FCC estimates the ECF funding committed to Oregon so far will help connect roughly 150,000 students in the state. In addition, the funding is providing support for 25,211 broadband connections and 148,180 connected devices. Of these, 24,878 connections and 147,515 devices are for Oregon schools.

State-by-state funding commitments can be found HERE.

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Tags: Education