The Schools and Libraries Program of the Universal Service Fund, commonly known as “E-Rate,” is administered by the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) under the direction of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).
It provides discounts to help most U.S. schools and libraries obtain affordable telecommunications and bandwidth. It is one of four support programs funded through a Universal Service fee charged to companies that provide interstate and/or international telecommunications services.
- E-Rate discounts are based on the the school’s participation in the National School Lunch Program and it’s urban or rural status.
- The program provides eligible K-12 institutions with up to 90% discounts on approved telecommunications, and up to 85% discounts on internal connections, basic maintenance of internal connections and managed internal broadband services.
Schools: All elementary and secondary schools, as defined within the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, are covered. Private schools are eligible as long as they are not a for-profit business and do not have an endowment exceeding $50 million. Individual schools, school districts, and consortia are eligible applicants.
Libraries: Public libraries, as defined in the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA), are also eligible. This includes individual library branches, facilities, systems, and consortia.
SUBMIT YOUR 470 FOR A QUOTE
What Services are Available?
Telecommunication Services: Schools and libraries have maximum flexibility to choose among different types of commercially available telecommunication services for both voice and data.
- Wireless access points
- System support and maintenance
- Telephone lines for teachers to receive phone calls in the classroom
- High-bandwidth telecommunication services
- Satellite delivery for distance learning; and coaxial cable
Internet Access: Services for accessing the Internet are eligible for discounts. Content, such as a paid subscription services, is not covered.
Internal Connections — Bringing the Technology into the Learning Environment: Basic installation and maintenance of a network are eligible for discounts. Examples of eligible technologies necessary for establishing a network include: routers; hubs; wireless local area networks; and software needed for operation.
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