The WCB has announced that there is sufficient funding available to fully meet the USAC's estimated demand for Category One and Category Two requests for E-Rate supported services for Funding Year 2021, and directs USAC to fully fund eligible Category One and Category Two requests, using the $500 million in E-Rate funds unused from prior years, and any additional funds needed under the current funding cap to fully meet demand for such services.
Download DA 21-1063 Public Notice PDF
In view of outstanding demand and the recent spike in coronavirus cases, the FCC will open a second ECF application filing window for schools and libraries to request funding for connected devices and broadband connections for off-campus use by students, school staff, and library patrons for the current 2021-22 school year.
During the second application filing window, which will run from September 28 to October 13, eligible schools and libraries can apply for financial support to purchase eligible equipment and services for students, school staff and library patrons with unmet needs.
The funding is available for the purchase of laptops and tablets, Wi-Fi hotspots, modems, routers, and broadband connections for off-campus use by students, school staff, and library patrons in need, and is available to support off-campus learning, such as homework, even if schools have returned to full time in-person instruction.
Along with ALA, COSN, SHLB and SETDA, SECA signed a letter filed with the FCC requesting the E-rate gift rule waiver be extended through June 30, 2022. This is consistent with the ECF gift rule waiver.
Download Joint Letter
The FCC has adopted and announced the final rules to implement the Emergency Connectivity Fund Program (ECF). This $7.17 billion program, funded by the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, will enable schools and libraries to purchase laptop and tablet computers, Wi-Fi hotspots, and broadband connectivity for students, school staff, and library patrons in need during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Download FCC Order 21-58
The Remote Learning Coalition, with signatories including Schools, Health & Libraries Broadband (SHLB) Coalition, State E-Rate Coordinators’ Alliance (SECA), Funds For Learning, Consortium for School Networking, State Educational Technology Directors Association, American Library Association, and Urban Libraries Council filed an Ex Parte recommending changes to the draft ECF Order.
Download Remote Learning Coalition ECF Ex Parte Letter
SECA filed an Ex Parte letter and supplementary documents summarizing its recommendations to the FCC on the implementation of the ECF Program.
Notice of Ex Parte Meeting with FCC Representatives re ECF
ECF Ex Parte Presentation
SECA ECF Implementation Recommendations For Form 471 Modifications
SECA has filed Initial Comments in response to Public Notice DA 21-317 seeking comment on Emergency Connectivity Fund established by Congress as part of the American Rescue Plan Act.
Download SECA Comments
The WCB has announced that the E-Rate program funding cap for Funding Year 2021 is $4,276,833,965 which represents a 1.2% inflation-adjusted increase in the $4,226,120,519 cap from Funding Year 2020.
Download DA 21-323 Public Notice PDF
To help schools and libraries provide devices and connectivity to students, school staff, and library patrons during the pandemic, Congress established a $7.171 billion Emergency Connectivity Fund as part of the recently enacted American Rescue Plan Act. The WCB announced on March 16 that it is seeking comment on the provision of support from the fund.
Comment Date: April 5, 2021
Reply Comment Date: April 23, 2021
SECA has filed Initial Comments in response to Public Notice DA 21-98 seeking comment on the various petitions for emergency relief concerning remote learning. These petitions request the FCC to allow E-rate funds to be used for facilitating broadband Internet access to students and teachers who are participating in remote learning, off-campus, during the COVID-19 pandemic.
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