The Homework Gap

COVID-19 dramatically changed the way schools functioned in 2020 as they rapidly adjusted to remote learning. This exposed the “Homework Gap” of students with no or poor home Internet access – over 20% of US households.

While many schools have provided MiFi hotspots to students, this is not a long-term solution. IT managers drowned in the cost and logistics of managing thousands of devices. Schools must be prepared to support remote learning in the future and need sustainable, permanent solutions.

School kid working on homework on his laptop

Government Help

National governments have responded to COVID-19 with different programs to help fund recovery from the pandemic’s impact. The US Congress established the $7.2 billion Emergency Connectivity Fund (ECF) as part of the American Rescue Plan of 2021 to reimburse expenses for equipment and services used for Internet access outside of the school. The application filing window opened June 29, 2021. More information on the program can be found here.

Other US Federal programs provide funding that may have applicability to the Homework Gap, including:

  • Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act of 2020
  • Consolidates Appropriations Act (CAA) of 2021

Webinar Replays

Strategies and Solutions for the $7.2B Emergency Connectivity Fund (ECF) Homework Gap

Featuring Andrew Moore, CIO of Boulder
Valley School Districts

Bridging the Homework Gap with the New $7.2B Emergency Connectivity Fund (ECF)

Featuring Jim Hinsdale, President of
Live Wire Networks

Bridging the Homework Gap

As an alternative to costly MiFi, Cambium’s fixed wireless solutions and its network of wireless ISPs (WISPs) can extend school networks to reach students where they are learning remotely.

WISPs can bridge the homework gap by  extending school networks to reach students who are learning remotely.

Wireless solutions can complement existing solutions that include wired, cellular or other technologies. Cambium Networks offers a wide range of flexible solutions to bridge the Homework Gap and bring long-term value through:

  • Sustainability: Don’t build out a network for the short term but build it for the future by avoiding high recurring costs.
  • Purpose-Built Networks: Sharing cellular network data to extend your network cannot guarantee the service levels you want to ensure. Create a purpose-built network with future-proof wireless technology. Use a combination of private LTE, mmWave and proprietary solutions.
  • Affordability: Use affordable, easy-to-manage and complementary wireless networks. Don’t break the bank as you aspire to bridge the Homework Gap.

The Cambium Solutions Advantage

Extend your existing Wi-Fi network to your outdoor campus facilities or community gathering places such as playgrounds, church parking lots and parks using private LTE, high-throughput mmWave technology or proprietary wireless solutions. Seamlessly manage the outdoor Wi-Fi just as you would inside your facilities but at a fraction of the cost compared to wired solutions.

Connect your under-connected student body or community members with a dedicated wireless solution. Avoid trenching expensive cables by simply installing an outdoor-plus-indoor device and have instant connectivity. Manage the entire network from a single pane of glass.

Short on time and need to expand connectivity quickly? Leverage cellular networks’ outdoor routers and outdoor Wi-Fi hotspots from Cambium Networks to quickly extend coverage from playgrounds to residential neighborhoods.

Cambium Networks' wireless and Wi-Fi connectivity solutions rapidly connect schools and education districts

Sustainable Connectivity for Both Communities & Classrooms

In addition to schools, fixed wireless solutions can deliver access to the broader community through a sustainable network solution. Service providers that are skilled in providing broadband networks install and manage the networks, allowing schools to focus their resources on excellence in education. Explore our fixed wireless broadband solutions for business and residential applications.

The deployment of a reliable, high-performance network is going to transform our community, allowing our students to connect to their classes virtually and enabling our workforce to elevate its knowledge and capabilities.

Dr. J.A. Gonzalez, Ed.D., Superintendent of McAllen Independent School District

Closing the Digital Divide in Education

Recent connected school projects:

Collinsville Community Unit School District #10 partnered with IT solutions provider STEP CG to construct a private LTE network which utilizes technologies from Nokia and Cambium Networks.

Get the details on this school-owned and operated network, which is among the first in the United States.

McAllen, Texas Community Broadband – The Mayor, Superintendent of Schools and communications service providers collaborated to deploy a community-wide access network serving thousands of students.

Read more about this network that was planned and deployed in a matter of weeks.

Remote Education for Western US Tribal Nations – Community leaders and communications consultants connected more than 100,000 people in 11 Native American Tribal communities.

Find out how system integrators helped communities design, deploy and operate a broadband network that improves education.

How Do We Do This?

Cambium Networks has an extensive base of Service Provider partners. They have the expertise to assist and deploy all these solutions on your behalf.