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E-Rate

Coverage of E-Rate, the nickname of the Schools and Libraries Program of the Universal Service Fund, subsidized by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to help schools and libraries nationwide access Internet and telecommunication services.

Launched in June, the Public Education Department’s program has helped 110 school districts, tribal-affiliated and charter schools apply for more than $65 million in federal aid. A new application window starts Sept. 28.
The Massachusetts school district drew from the Emergency Connectivity Fund and other sources to buy 1,200 Chromebooks, 900 laptops, 1,500 broadband hotspots, interactive touchscreens and electronic whiteboards.
Schools in need of Internet access and related equipment for virtual learning have another opportunity to receive money through the Emergency Connectivity Fund, the FCC announced this week.
In light of an ongoing cyber crime epidemic that’s unlikely to end soon, federal agencies must take action to update policy definitions, increase spending caps and partner with school districts to defend their networks.
With the help of matching funds from the federal E-Rate program, the Pennsylvania district is spending more than $180,000 to upgrade its eight-year-old network with 78 wireless access points and 12 switches.
School districts continue to get hit by ransomware attacks. But it’s not just IT’s job to keep networks and data secure.
The Federal Communications Commission has announced rules for its new Emergency Connectivity Fund, which will distribute $7.17 billion announced earlier this year for school broadband and devices.
As last year's drastic shift to online learning put technology front and center for school districts, many K-12 IT officials have found themselves in key advisory or leadership roles with growing responsibilities.
President Joe Biden signed a stimulus bill on Thursday that includes funding to expand Internet connectivity for underserved students during the COVID-19 pandemic, which ed tech advocates hail as a major step forward.
Ed tech policy advocates are asking the FCC for help funding cybersecurity in public schools, as virtual learning continues and K-12 education is the most-targeted public sector for ransomware attacks.