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Getting the Word Out About $$ for High-Speed Internet in Schools

We created an E-Rate Opportunity Toolkit to help state policymakers and local school leaders understand the changes to the E-rate modernization program.

Almost every school in America has access to the Internet. Sounds pretty good, right? Well, consider this: More than 60 percent of America's schools don't have adequate Internet capacity -- not fast enough, and not enough classrooms connected -- to perform the types of basic academic and administrative functions that are increasingly desired and expected in our schools.

That's why Common Sense Kids Action and the State Educational Technology Directors Association (SETDA) have teamed up to help finish the job of connecting every classroom and library in America to high-speed Internet by the year 2018.  

Last year, the Federal Communications Commission modernized the E-rate program, making $9 billion in new funding available to strengthen the nation's education technology infrastructure. The reforms to the E-rate program will make it more affordable for 

states and local leaders to work together to lay fiber and strengthen Wi-Fi networks that benefit our schools and libraries.

Together, Kids Action and SETDA have created an E-Rate Opportunity Toolkit to help state policy makers and local school leaders understand the changes to the E-rate modernization program and how best to apply for the funds. The toolkit release coincided with SETDA's annual leadership summit just outside Washington, D.C., where Common Sense CEO Jim Steyer gave the keynote address.  

High-speed Internet is essential in today's digital world, in schools as much as elsewhere. It's only common sense that every classroom and library, not to mention every home, regardless of ZIP code, is connected to the same broadband network that is powering today's educational and economic opportunities.

Do you know a public school district or library that lacks adequate Internet connection? Send us a note with the details and we can make sure they get our toolkit right away.

 

Kennon Bouldin