WASHINGTON, August 5, 2013 – At its open meeting on July 19, the Federal Communications Commission announced that it would work to modernize the E-Rate program in order to provide greater bandwidth for schools and libraries.
Reforms to be implemented to the E-Rate program include the provision of affordable, high-capacity broadband for schools and libraries, the improvement of administrative efficiency and the maximization of cost-effectiveness in purchases. The agency also said it would work to improve its data collection methods in order to be able to more fairly allocate funding and phase out funding for outdated services so that more money can be allotted to investments that will increase bandwidth.
The changes were driven in part to meet the goals set out by President Barack Obama under his ConnectEd program. In June, Obama announced that he intends to ensure that 99 percent of schools have Gigabit-level broadband connections within the next five years.
FCC Acting Chairwoman Mignon Clyburn said that schools and libraries currently have a severe lack in broadband speed. She said that half of schools in a 2010 FCC survey had a slower internet connection than the average home. Additionally, 41 percent of libraries reported that their internet speeds were insufficient to satisfy user demands in 2012.
Clyburn also said that adequate broadband connections can greatly improve the quality of education. She cited the example of Loris Elementary in South Carolina which, through provided students with laptops and educational software, moved from forty-first to the top twenty in a state ranking of similar schools.
“It doesn’t matter whether you live in a rural, low-income area or in a wealthy urban community, connecting a child to the Internet links them to cutting-edge instruction and new learning opportunities,” Clyburn said.
- Smart Cities Connect to Hold 2020 Global Event Honoring 50 Smart Projects
- Broadband Roundup: More on the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund, 5G National Advocacy, and Policy Hackers
- Panelists on NTIA Broadband Webinar Say Smart Buildings Boost Civic Resiliency and Public Health
- Dynamic Spectrum Sharing Subject of Debate at Senate Commerce Committee Hearing on the Future
- FTC Settlement with YouTube Has Creators Upset and Worried About FTC Approach to Children’s Privacy
Signup for Broadband Breakfast
China2 months ago
Prakash Sangam: China’s Huawei Clones Are Greater Threat to National Security than Huawei
Open Access3 weeks ago
UTOPIA Fiber: A Model Open-Access Network
Broadband's Impact3 months ago
FCC Chairman Ajit Pai Praises Agency’s Work in Promoting High-Speed Internet at ‘Broadband Heros’ Event
Open Access2 months ago
UTOPIA Fiber Announces Partnerships with Morgan, Utah, Idaho Falls, and Other Cities
Broadband Mapping & Data3 months ago
Broadband Data From Providers Needs to be Checked With Data From Users, Say Panelists at Mapping Event
FCC2 months ago
As Next Year’s C-Band Auction Looms, FCC Officials Reflect on Innovation in Spectrum Auctions
Education2 months ago
State Educational Technology Officials Say Better Broadband Necessary for Pedagogy and Equity
FCC1 month ago
Telephony Industry Rises to the Challenge of Robocalls, With Legislation, Regulation and Enforcement Close Behind