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Closing the Homework Gap: Federal Efforts to Support Access

In March of 2020, nearly 17 million children didn’t have home internet access and the pandemic only made the internet more important. 

However, the federal government has stepped in and supported closing the digital divide:

Department of Education Activities

Digital Equity Education Roundtables (DEER)

Advancing Digital Equity for All: Community-based Recommendations for Developing Effective Digital Equity Plans to Close the Digital Divide and Enable Technology-Empowered Learning

National Education Technology Plan

Broadband Equity, Access and Development (BEAD) Program

Digital Equity Act

  • Development of Digital Equity Plan; due 1 year after receipt of funds
  • Funding is currently being disbursed to states
  • Must include measurable objectives promoting digital literacy
  • Must assess how measurable objectives will impact education

  • Implement Digital Equity Plan

  • Developing and implement digital inclusion activities
  • Facilitating the adoption of broadband by underserved populations in order to provide educational and employment opportunities
  • Making available equipment, instrumentation, networking capability, hardware, and software, or digital network technology for broadband services to underserved populations at low or no cost

Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP)

EligibilityLow-income students and families
Broadband ConnectivityUp to $30/month for low-income families

Up to $75/month for low-income families on Tribal Lands
Connected Devices1 laptop, desktop, or tablet per household

Up to $100 per device
Specific Eligibility Requirements

Emergency Connectivity Fund (ECF)

EligibilityAll schools and libraries; priority for rural areas
Broadband ConnectivityReasonable costs for broadband connectivity”

estimated at $10-$25/month
Connected Devices1 device laptop or tablet per student Co
Up to $400 per device

Want to Learn More?

Download our presentation that talks through the Homework Gap and federal activities to help.

Download the Homework Gap PPT

Rebeca Shackleford

Director of Federal Government Relations

Meet Rebeca