WASHINGTON, D.C. – June 20, 2014 – The International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE®) issued the following statement from CEO Brian Lewis today in response to Federal Communication Commission Chairman (FCC) Wheeler’s decision to circulate his E-Rate order: 

“Today’s action at the FCC to roll-out a draft E-Rate order represents a step backward for this critical program. Instead of placing this invaluable but cash-strapped program on sound financial footing for the next decade, this draft order rests its laudable proposals to deploy robust WiFi to all classrooms and libraries on very shaky ground.

Even though the draft order envisions a five-year, $1 billion per year build-out of wireless connectivity within school and library buildings, it only identifies two years of the funding needed and no guarantee of more dollars after that.  Further, the savings that it anticipates from ramping down E-Rate support for voice services is likely to be used up rapidly by the increased Internet access costs expected from greater connectivity.”

Let’s stop rearranging the deckchairs. Let’s invest the funding that even the Commission knows the E-Rate needs to fully equip our students, educators and library patrons with the bandwidth necessary for improved education, employment and citizenship. Join us in telling Chairman Wheeler to raise the E-Rate’s cap now and make our shared vision for connected classrooms and libraries a reality. Tweet to @FCC using the hashtag: #RaiseTheErateCap.”

About ISTE

The International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE®) is the premier nonprofit organization serving educators and education leaders committed to empowering connected learners in a connected world. ISTE serves more than 100,000 education stakeholders throughout the world. 

ISTE's innovative offerings include the ISTE Conference and Expo — one of the biggest, most comprehensive ed tech events — as well as the widely adopted ISTE Standards for learning, teaching and leading in the digital age and a robust suite of professional learning resources, including webinars, online courses, consulting services for schools and districts, books, and peer-reviewed journals and publications. For more information, visit iste.org. Connect with ISTE via Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

For more information, media only:
Jodie Pozo-Olano, Chief Communications Office, ISTE, 804-986-6911, jpozoolano@iste.org 

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