Human resources

Boone County Library Receives Grant for Remote Learning Resources

The Boone County Public Library is one of 28 counties receiving support from the state’s Emergency Connectivity Fund to support remote learning.

Kentucky Public Libraries is receiving more than $1.2 million from the Eme Connectivity Fund, a federal program to help schools and libraries provide the tools and services their communities need for remote learning.

For the July 2021 through June 2022 funding year, all Kentucky public library applications have been approved for up to $1,063,405 in ECF rebates to be disbursed as libraries are billed for eligible products and services. , according to a press release from the governor’s office.

The program deadline has been extended to December 2023 due to the pandemic. So far, an additional $218,728 has been approved for the period between July 2022 and December 2023 with other applications under consideration, according to the release.

The Federal Communications Commission’s $7.171 billion fund was authorized by Congress through the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 to help fill the homework gap for those who currently don’t have access Internet needed or devices they need to connect remotely for school work.

For eligible schools and libraries, ECF will cover the reasonable costs of laptops and tablets; Wi-Fi hotspots; modems; broadband routers and connectivity purchases for off-campus use by students, faculty, and library patrons.

KDLA provides one-on-one training and consultation for public library staff to complete required forms to ensure libraries meet deadlines and follow ECF program rules correctly.

In the first year of ECF funding, 26 public libraries in Kentucky received funding commitments for hotspot hardware and monthly cellular data, as well as connected devices such as laptops or tablets, for use by users outside the library. The combined requests will fund over 400 laptops or tablets and over 2,700 access points.