U.S. Sen. Patty Murray, D-WA, who pushed for broadband funding in Washington schools. (Screenshot from murray.senate.gov)

U.S. Sen. Patty Murray, D-WA, who pushed for broadband funding in Washington schools. (Screenshot from murray.senate.gov)

American Rescue Plan Act funding approved for broadband investments in WA schools

U.S. Sen. Patty Murray pushed for the funding, which will benefit several King County school districts.

On Jan. 21, U.S. Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA), announced more than $88 million in American Rescue Plan broadband investments for Washington state schools and libraries.

The funding comes via the Federal Communications Commission’s Emergency Connectivity Fund, which commits federal funds to support schools and libraries in providing digital tools and services to communities harmed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Every child deserves the very best education we can offer them, but that’s not possible without access to high-speed internet,” said Murray in a written statement. “That’s why I fought so hard for this money in the American Rescue Plan, and it’s great to see it being put to good use. With more help on the way from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, I am determined to make sure every student in Washington state can get online and get the education they deserve.”

The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, which Murray helped pass, will also provide at least $100 million for broadband deployment in Washington state to help families access reliable, high-speed internet, with more federal dollars available through grant funding.

An estimated 19% of people in Washington state are eligible for the new Affordable Connectivity Program established under the legislation, which provides up to $30 per month in discounted internet service and a one-time $100 discount on internet-connected devices.

The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law also includes Murray’s Digital Equity Act, which is aimed at helping close the “digital divide” by funding activities that seek to provide individuals and communities with the skills, supports, and technologies necessary to take full advantage of a broadband internet connection when they have one.

Through the Emergency Connectivity Fund, students in Washington state who have experienced difficulty getting online will now have greater resources available to ensure they can access homework online and receive a high-quality education. Additional information on the Emergency Connectivity Fund program is available at: emergencyconnectivityfund.org.

School districts in King County that are slated to receive broadband funding include:

Lake Washington School District in Redmond with $2,466,240 of total obligated funding.

Northshore School District in Bothell with $1,353,951 in total obligated funding.

Issaquah School District with $1,020,000 in total obligated funding.

Auburn School District with $850,902 in total obligated funding.

Kent School District with $954,563 in total obligated funding.

Renton School District with $603,851 in total obligated funding.


Talk to us

Please share your story tips by emailing editor@rentonreporter.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.rentonreporter.com/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) Please keep letters to 300 words or less.

More in News

T
Use your King County library card to explore the outdoors

KCLS cardholders can check out a Discover Pass for two weeks to explore public lands.

Monkeypox virus. Photo courtesy of the Centers for Disease Control.
King County identifies first presumptive monkeypox case

The illness is not as easily transmitted compared to COVID-19, according to health officer.

This screenshot from Auburn Police Department bodycam footage shows an officer about to fire his weapon and kill dog on May 13, 2022.
Auburn police shoot dog, and owner claims it wasn’t justified

See videos of attack as well as bodycam footage of officer firing at dog.

File photo.
King County Council approves creation of Cannabis Safety Taskforce amid rash of dispensary robberies

The multi-agency task force will cooperate to find ways to improve safety in the cash-only industry.

File photo.
Renton man pleaded not guilty to charges stemming from hair salon robbery in Seattle

Investigators say the man stole $55,000 worth of jewerly and property from someone inside the salon.

U.S. Department of Justice logo.
Renton man sentenced for killing of woman in Olympic National Forest

Authorities say the he brutally beat to death the California woman who he was having an affair with.

Screenshot from GoRenton.com
Registration is open for 7th Annual Renton Career Fair

The event will be held at Renton Technical College on June 3.

Screenshot from ORCA website
New ORCA system launches for regional transit across the Puget Sound

Overhaul includes new website, mobile application and digital business account manager.

Judged by XII: A King County Local Dive podcast. The hands shown here belong to Auburn Police Officer Jeffrey Nelson, who has been charged with homicide in the 2019 death of Jesse Sarey.
JUDGED BY XII (Episode 4): Foster mom wants accountability in Auburn cop’s upcoming murder trial

Special podcast series explores Auburn Police Officer Jeffrey Nelson’s role in the death of Jesse Sarey.

Diane Renee Erdmann and Bernard Ross Hansen. Photos courtesy of FBI
FBI arrests Auburn couple after 11-day manhunt

The couple was previously convicted for fraud and skipped sentencing on April 29.

FILE PHOTO: King County Sheriff’s Office deputies.
Dozens of King County Sheriff’s Office employees left jobs instead of getting vaccinated

This added on to the existing number of vacancies in the department.