The US E-rate program has helped school districts across the country acquire the vital connection to the Internet required for educating our K-12 students. The FCC is now seeking public comments on the program and we need your help to make sure they understand the full value of this critical funding program. Please give us your input through our survey. We’ll collect the results and forward them to the FCC. The comment period is short; we need your inputs by Friday, October 20.
Background on E-Rate
The E-rate program is divided into two categories. Category two, which is now at risk, provides schools with up to $150 per student for internal connections including Wi-Fi so that students can connect to the Internet. Category one supports the base connectivity between the Internet and schools and libraries. According to Funds For Learning more than a third (37%) of participating sites have not touched their Category Two budgets, and another quarter (23%) have used less than half of their budgets.
The FCC has now launched a public notice seeking comment on Category two budgets. Specifically, this public notice asks how schools have used their allotments and whether schools made Wi-Fi purchases without E-Rate support. The public notice also asks why some schools have not used their allotments yet and whether they plan to do so before the end of the five-year formula cycle. The public comment period ends on October 23.
You can help by taking our two-minute survey about your school’s involvement with E-rate. The survey will be open until October 20th, so please take it now to allow time for compiling the results and forwarding them to the FCC. Your help is greatly appreciated! Let’s keep the E-rate program active and enabling Internet connections for K-12 students.
For more on the E-rate program, visit our E-rate Resource Center.