Thanks to funding from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), the Chillicothe & Ross County Public Library has obtained 500 WiFi hotspots to support Ross County students lacking adequate internet connectivity at home for the 2021-2022 school year.

The FCC’s Emergency Connectivity Fund (ECF) is a $7.17 billion program that is assisting schools and libraries in providing the tools and services their communities need for remote learning during the COVID-19 emergency period. ECF will provide relief to millions of students and will help close the Homework Gap for those who currently lack necessary Internet access or the devices they need to connect to classrooms. A total of $193,185 was granted to CRCPL by the FCC for the purchase of the hotspots and their annual contracts.

WiFi hotspots use cellular service to connect devices to the internet. Hotspots can be used to connect a computer, laptop, tablet, smartphone, video game player, and many other Internet-enabled devices. Since the Internet is delivered via cellular signal, service may not be available in all areas.

To qualify for the Student Hotspot Lending Program at CRCPL:

  • A parent/guardian must check out the WiFi hotspot.
  • Students and parents/guardians must have a Ross County, Ohio, address.
  • The hotspot will be checked out on the parent/guardian card for the entire school year.
  • One hotspot can hold up to 15 connections at a time, therefore hotspots are limited to one device per household.
  • There are no fees or penalties for this program. Call the library at 740-702-4148 for technical assistance or to report a damaged, lost, or stolen hotspot.

Applications have been distributed to all Ross County high schools, but hotspots are available for students of any age with a Ross County address.

To apply for a student hotspot, visit CRCPL.org/studenthotspots to download the application or pick one up at and return it to any library location. You may also call the library at 740-702-4148, or email hotspots@crcpl.org for more information.