E-rate reform: A sustainable path forward for school and library connectivity

“A year ago, President Obama unveiled the ConnectED initiative, declaring that his goal was to connect virtually every school in the United States to high-speed Internet by the end of the decade. A key piece of the administration’s plan is reforming the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) E-rate program, which subsidizes communications services for schools and libraries across the country. There’s been a flurry of activity in the past year aimed at addressing the broadband gaps that make it increasingly difficult for schools and libraries to use 21st century digital-learning tools. A wide range of stakeholders weighed in during two rounds of comments at the FCC, and everyone from Obama to local leaders and tech CEOs have called to upgrade America’s aging broadband infrastructure. Now, as students and teachers prepare for summer break, the FCC is gearing up to make changes in time to impact the 2015 E-rate funding cycle. The exact details are still being ironed out, but it’s clear that more reforms will be needed in addition to those being discussed for the commission’s open meeting in July.” (via The Hill)

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