As state and local government officials are in the process of allocating American Rescue Plan (ARP) funding, schools are looking at ways to use the money to modernize their IT. A recent study indicated that 55% of the decision-makers from participating educational institutions plan to use ARP funding on technology and broadband infrastructure. Let’s look at some of the ways different schools plan to spend their ARP funds.
North Carolina Community Colleges To Allocate $3.7 Million To Combat Cyberattacks
Since 2019, community colleges in North Carolina have fallen victim to four cyberattacks. After attendees learned of the impacts of the ransomware attacks during the State Board of Community College meeting, they approved three cybersecurity-focused priorities, totaling just over $3.7 million. The focal point of the funds is to allocate $750,000 for security and technical assistance to improve system-wide security architecture and an implementation plan. In addition, they will dedicate $1.5 million in professional services to implement their IT plan and have $1.49 million in additional funding to use for filling positions for IT security and compliance manager.
Palmetto, Florida School District To Expand Cybersecurity Instruction
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis recently announced that he will sign off on ARP funding, which prompted Superintendent of the Manatee County School District Cynthia Saunders to share her plans to expand cybersecurity education within the elementary schools in her area.
Currently, only one school in the district provides specialized cybersecurity instruction to elementary students. In 2019, Palm View K-8 School located in Palmetto became the first Woz-Ed Career Pathways school in the nation. A Woz-Ed Career Pathway school provides specialized instruction in several career-oriented areas, including cybersecurity. Saunders announced that this funding will be used to expand the Woz-Ed program to every elementary school in the county, which expands cybersecurity-focused instruction to all elementary students within the Manatee County School District.
$15 Million of North Carolina Funds To Go To 25 Rural Community Colleges To Improve Their Connectivity
After seeing the impact of having more reliable broadband internet options for community college students, the North Carolina State Senate has prioritized plans to use $15 million of ARP funding to improve broadband access for 25 rural community colleges.
With the allocations from the ARP funds, these schools will benefit from more modern IT that will help protect them from cyberattacks and improve their connectivity to school networks.
If you are trying to make smart decision on using ARP funding, check out our American Rescue Plan: IT Funding for governments and education agencies eBook here.