The FCC Emergency Connectivity Fund (ECF) to help schools and libraries close the Homework Gap will start accepting applications on June 29, 2021.
Under the ECF Program, eligible schools and libraries can apply for financial support to purchase connected devices like laptops and tablets, Wi-Fi hotspots, modems, routers, and broadband connectivity to serve the unmet needs of students, school staff, and library patrons at home during the COVID-19 emergency period.
Public, Private and Charter Schools as well as libraries that are eligible for support under the E-rate Program are also all eligible to request and receive support from the Emergency Connectivity Fund (ECF) Program. You may still have questions about eligibility so please refer to the F.A.Q. below!
Q: If my school or library is eligible for E-Rate support, is it eligible for the ECF program?
Q: Are private schools eligible?
A: Yes, private schools are eligible if they meet the definition of elementary or secondary schools as defined in the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (20 U.S.C. § 7801(19) and (45)), are non-profit, and do not have an endowment exceeding $50 million.
Q: Are Tribal libraries eligible?
A: Yes. Tribal libraries are eligible for support from the ECF program. Tribal libraries may demonstrate their eligibility by providing (1) documentation from an authorizing Tribal government entity (such as a charter or ordinance or letter from the Tribal Council), (2) documentation from an authorizing entity that shows that the applicant has characteristics of a library, including regular hours, staff, and materials, or (3) a signed letter from a state library agency.
Q: Is a college library (e.g., a Tribal college library) eligible?
A: No. A library’s eligibility depends on its funding as an independent entity. Only libraries whose budgets are completely separate from any schools (including, but not limited to, elementary and secondary schools, colleges, and universities) are eligible.
Q: Do I need a SAM.gov account if I am an annual E-Rate applicant?
A: Yes. SAM.gov registration is necessary for all entities that receive funds from the U.S. government. Because this is not currently required to participate in the E-Rate program, applicants that may not have registered before should begin the process now. Service providers that agree to invoice on behalf of applicants also need to be registered with SAM.gov.
More questions on the ECF Program? Visit the FCC’s FAQ Page