The E-rate program, which is entering its 20th cycle and is worth about $4 billion, is still giving. It can still help districts connect their school buildings to the internet—unbeknownst to some leaders, says John Harrington, CEO of Funds for Learning consulting firm.
As in years past, this new year will bring all sorts of new technology to schools. The question for educators is: To what degree do these technologies enhance education?
E-Rate funds kept at least one district connected to the internet through testing—and opened the door for a 1-to-1 initiative rolling out this fall.
With the modernization of E-rate and the increase in available funding for school districts, many administrators face a strategic choice when it comes to their network. Some districts may choose a managed service through a third-party vendor, while others want to keep their network managed in-house by district staff. There are pros and cons to each model and several key considerations every district should examine before making this important IT decision.