Ohio Governor Mike DeWine and Lt. Governor Jon Husted provided the following update on the status of the state's response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Lt. Governor Husted announced that schools can begin applying for the new BroadbandOhio Connectivity Grant on Monday, August 10.
A total of $50 million will be allocated through the grant program to help provide hotspots and internet-enabled devices to students.
Schools can begin applying for this grant opportunity at https://ohio-k12.help/broadbandohio-connectivity-grant/. The public website will be live today, however schools will not be able to apply until Monday.
After hearing feedback from various groups that the matching grant requirement would create a barrier for districts, it has been removed from the program. Many school districts have already begun to make purchases for the upcoming school year, and as a result, purchases made since July 1 of this year are eligible for support from this program.
The application period will close Friday, August 21.
In the coming days, the Ohio Department of Education will begin notifying district superintendents and school leaders around the state to make them aware of this program.
To help schools make the best purchasing decisions based on their needs, internet providers have begun to list their equipment and pricing information in one centralized location to the benefit of Ohio schools through a Request for Information. Visit procure.ohio.gov to review the RFI.
The K-12 School Computer Products and Services RFI was released to the public on July 23, 2020, and a variety of companies have provided responses.
CURRENT COVID-19 DATA
There are 98,675 confirmed and probable cases of COVID-19 in Ohio and 3,652 confirmed and probable COVID-19 deaths. A total of 11,447 people have been hospitalized, including 2,641 admissions to intensive care units. In-depth data can be accessed by visiting coronavirus.ohio.gov.