FCC Announces Final Proposal For ERate: AASA Response and Call for Improvement

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Today, the FCC shared top-line talking points related to the final order of proposed changes to the E-Rate program, as early as July 11. While the information made available today is more concrete than what we can glean from conversations, there is much left to be clarified, a level of detail that can come only from an actual order, with full detail.

Earlier this morning, AASA joined 12 other national school groups in sending a letter to the FCC to express deep concern with the FCC’s direction and momentum. The groups, while supporting E-Rate modernization, express serious hesitation related to the FCC’s proposed changes and how they factor into program sustainability, ensuring the program continues to serve the neediest of districts, and providing funding that supports both basic monthly connections as well as the prioritized internal connections.

At this point, we are disappointed in the rush to move forward with this proposal, especially when the school and library groups—representing the very beneficiaries the program is intended to support—have clearly articulated objections to some of the proposed changes. We are still deeply committed to E-Rate modernization and welcome the chance to work with the FCC to improve this initial proposal, to ensure that the changes do not negatively impact high cost and low population rural and remote schools and libraries. We look forward to advancing a proposed set of changes that are reasonable, satisfactory changes that both the FCC and program beneficiaries can support.

Read this morning’s letter, signed by AASA, American Federation of Teachers, Association of Educational Service Agencies, Council of the Great City Schools, International Society for Technology in Education, National Association of Elementary School Principals, National Association of Federally Impacted Schools, National Association of Secondary School Principals, National Catholic Educational Association, National Education Association, National PTA, National Rural Education Advocacy Coalition, and National Rural Education Association.

You can also read the FCC’s related blog post and top-line talking points.


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