WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Ben Cardin and Barbara A. Mikulski, together with U.S. Representative John Delaney (all D-Md.) today announced that the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) awarded the Allegany County Board of Education $150,000 for the John Humbird and Cash Valley Elementary Schools Fiber Extension project.
“Ensuring Allegany County students have all the tools they need to learn is critically important to a strong Maryland,” said Senator Cardin, who recently introduced bipartisan legislation to reauthorize funding for ARC. “Internet access is no longer a luxury item, this innovative and impactful ARC grant helps allow students from John Humbird and Cash Valley Elementary Schools to live up to their fullest potential. Team Maryland and ARC continue to be committed to rural Marylanders by connecting communities and training workers to be more competitive for today’s global economy.”
“Education is the opportunity ladder of this nation. Every child deserves their chance to climb that ladder,” said Senator Mikulski, a senior member of Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee. “Connecting these two schools with high-speed, reliable internet access is about preparing children today for jobs tomorrow. This grant will ensure our students in Allegany County have tools they need to succeed.”
“If we want our children to succeed in the 21st century, then our schools should be equipped with 21st century technology,” said Congressman John Delaney. “Today’s grant will help to give students, teachers and families in Allegany County the tools they need to connect with an increasingly global world. Children who grow up in Cumberland should have the same opportunity to succeed as any other Marylander, and today’s grant moves us closer to that reality.”
This grant will fund the extension of fiber optic cable for internet access to the John Humbird and Cash Valley Elementary Schools. Currently, the schools are underserved and do not have sufficient bandwidth available for video streaming and state assessment testing. The fiber connections will allow 500 megabit service and provides for the ability to surge to 10 gigabit if necessary. Over 300 students and 50 staff will benefit from increased access.
The ARC is a key partner in maximizing federal, state, and local resources to promote economic development in Western Maryland and throughout the region.
Senators Cardin and Mikulski have been leading supporters of the ARC Commission in the U.S. Senate. In recognition of his support of regional economic development and the ARC, Senator Cardin received the 2012 Congressional Award from the Development District Association of Appalachia.
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