On April 12, 2013, educational technology advocacy groups including the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE), the Consortium for School Networking (CoSN), and the State Educational Technology Directors Association (SEDTA), and SIIA’s Ed Tech Government Forum held the Washington Educational Technology Policy Summit. At this meeting, FCC commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel noted that the requirements for Common Core online assessments require better broadband connections. E-Rate was originally put into action 15 years ago when there was less need for connectivity and it’s due for an update. Rosenworcel also said funding for this program needs to increase. According to EdWeek, “For these proposals to take effect, they would need the approval of the full communciations commission. We’ll know whether Rosenworcel’s ideas have the necessary political traction in the months and years ahead.” Overhauling the E-Rate program could be a major boon for education, so stay tuned to the FCC for further developments.
In related news, ISTE has also launched a petition calling for an investment in classroom broadband connectivity. Please consider lending your name in support!