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As of noon Thursday the 22nd, 14,140 applications had been submitted by parents requesting Strong Families, Strong Students program funding to pay for computers and other services to aid with their children’s education.

The applications are for more than 29,225 Idaho school-age children and the average family size is 2.7 children.

The program and website went live at 8 a.m. (MDT) Wednesday.

Idaho State Board of Education President Debbie Critchfield says the early response indicates the Strong Families, Strong Students program is filling a huge need across the state. “We believed in the strength and purpose of this program and the tremendous response has validated that,” Critchfield said.

Eligible families can receive $1,500 per student, up to a maximum award of $3,500 per family.

Funds can be used to make purchases on the Strong Families, Strong Students online marketplace. They can purchase computer hardware and software, and other devices including adaptive learning technology, internet connectivity, instructional materials, and fees for courses, tutoring services, educational services and therapies, and licensed daycare during work hours.

December 8, 2020, is the deadline for enrollment but based on the early response, parents are encouraged to submit applications soon. Awards will be issued first based on economic need, and then on a first come, first serve basis.

Here’s the link to the Strong Families, Strong Students website: https://www.strongfamilies.idaho.gov

Governor Brad Little’s Coronavirus Financial Advisory Committee has allocated $50 million in federal coronavirus relief funds for the program.

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