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Press Room

September 18, 2017

Most Recent Press Release:

New Analysis Shows E-Rate Program Supporting Wi-Fi Services in More Than 42,700 Schools Nationwide

WASHINGTON, DC – A new analysis released today by the Alliance for Excellent Education and Funds for Learning® shows that more than 42,700 schools have accessed Wi-Fi services through the Federal Communications Commission’s (the FCC’s) E-rate program. The analysis provides a state-by-state breakdown of how much each state benefits from the program’s recent expansion to support high-speed Wi-Fi infrastructure and services in schools and libraries.

“E-rate is fueling the evolution of education,” said Bob Wise, president of the Alliance for Excellent Education and former governor of West Virginia. “This program is moving classrooms from traditional instruction to transformational learning. America cannot afford for the FCC to back down from its commitment to providing all students with a twenty-first-century learning experience.”

In the first year of this expansion, the FCC provided $1 billion to support Wi-Fi infrastructure and services; 83 percent of these funds supported low-income schools. This is especially critical given that these students are nearly twice as likely to have slow internet access as their peers at more affluent schools.

“The E-rate program has transformed student lives over the years by bringing internet access into school buildings. Now, every K–12 student in America has the opportunity to get Wi-Fi access in their classroom,” said John Harrington, chief executive officer at Funds for Learning®. “This analysis shines a light on the positive impact of access in states and schools, helping us all to better understand the important role of E-rate funding.”

Although nearly all schools and libraries have access to the internet, broadband connections are not always sufficient to provide seamless service to students and teachers. As websites and education technology tools become more sophisticated, infrastructure often fails to keep up with usage demands.

“Instead of crashing computers and unreliable networks, students and teachers have more uninterrupted classroom time to focus on what really matters—engaging content and dynamic, personalized instruction,” said Wise. “As a result, millions of students, particularly those from low-income families, experience less ‘buffering’ and more connecting to teachers, to each other, and to the real world.”

Click on the chart below to view the state-by-state breakdown of E-rate funds.

E-rate chart

The E-rate program has provided funds and discounts to make internet connectivity and other telecommunications services more affordable for schools and libraries since its creation in 1996. The greatest discounts are available to rural schools and libraries and those that serve high-poverty populations.

Learn how improved Wi-Fi services have opened doors for students and teachers alike at Silver Lake Unified School District (USD 372) in Kansas.

Access the E-rate chart at

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The Alliance for Excellent Education is a Washington, DC–based national policy, practice, and advocacy organization dedicated to ensuring all students, particularly those traditionally underserved, graduate from high school ready for success in college, work, and citizenship.

Funds For Learning® helps individual schools and libraries navigate the E-rate funding process and advocates for policies and regulations that support internet access for all students and library patrons.

Categories: E-Rate

More Press Releases:

New Alliance Report Uncovers Gaps in Access to College- and Career-Ready Diplomas

July 27, 2017

Of the nearly 100 different types of high school diplomas that are awarded across all fifty states and the District of Columbia, less than half prepare students for success in college and a career,...

New Report Provides Education Leaders with School Interventions That Work

July 18, 2017

As state, district, and school leaders begin work under the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) to identify and intervene in low-performing schools and among under-achieving groups of students, a new...

Education Advocate to Congress: Success Under New Education Law Is in Jeopardy

July 18, 2017

The potential of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) to improve educational outcomes for all U.S. students could be at risk because of a lack of innovation and courage among states, combined with...

Future Ready Schools Announces New Program for School Principals

July 5, 2017

Future Ready Schools® (FRS)—led by the Alliance for Excellent Education—announced FRS Principals, the latest expansion of the FRS initiative that empowers principals to implement a vision for...

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Visit Source

August 28, 2017

Most Recent Op-Ed:

Analysis: Strong Incentives for Academic Progress in New York’s Early ESSA Plan, But Goals Could Be More Ambitious

By Phillip Lovell. While students are gearing up for the new school year, education leaders across the country have been hunkering down all summer to finish up their state education plans as part of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). Sixteen states and the District of Columbia submitted their state plans to the U.S. Department […]

Categories: Every Student Succeeds Act

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August 28, 2017

More Op-Eds:

Bob Wise & Daniel Cardinali: As ESSA Frees Up Federal Funds, Districts Should Invest in America’s ‘Graduation Dividend’

Visit Source

May 31, 2016

Over the next few weeks, America should reach an important new milestone. Thanks to a lot of hard work by educators everywhere, high school graduation rates have inched up 1 percentage point every...

Bob Wise & John Gomperts: Six Ways for State Governors to Help Raise the Nation’s High School Graduation Rate

Visit Source

April 7, 2016

Spurred on by increased federal oversight and hard work by teachers, parents and students, the number of U.S. high school dropouts has decreased – falling to 750,000 in 2012 from 1 million in 2008....

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Alliance in the News

Inside Philanthropy September 20, 2017

Most Recent News Story:

Extra Help: Behind a New Targeted Push to Boost High School Graduation Rates

The high school graduation rate in the U.S. is higher than ever at 83.2 percent, but demographic gaps persist, according to a study out of Johns Hopkins University. A new project from America’s Promise Alliance hopes to address those gaps, while advancing the coalition’s goal to reach a 90 percent high school graduation rate nationwide by 2020 through its GradNation campaign.

Categories: Uncategorized
Inside Philanthropy September 20, 2017

More News Stories:

Kaine, Capito Introduce Bill to Reduce Workforce Shortages Through Middle School Pilot Program

Augusta Free Press

September 14, 2017

U.S. Senator Tim Kaine (D-VA), a member of the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee and co-chair of the Senate Career and Technical Education (CTE) Caucus, and Senator Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), introduced the bipartisan Middle School Technical Education Program (Middle STEP) Act, legislation that would expose middle school students to CTE programs focused on career exploration.

Teacher Turnover Rates Drop, But Concern Remains in Some Local Districts

Poughkeepsie Journal

September 6, 2017

About one in six U.S. teachers leave their schools each year, at a cost of $1 billion to $2.2 billion annually, for expenses such as recruitment, hiring and training, according to the Alliance for Excellent Education.

Pa. Department of Education Submits Federal Education Plan for Review

Trib Live

September 18, 2017

If you've ever wondered what's going on in the minds of state leaders when it comes to education, some experts say looking at Pennsylvania's new education plan — which the state Department of Education submitted Monday to the federal government — could give parents and the public a clue.

EdTech Startup Awards Seek Global Innovations

Campus Technology

September 13, 2017

A global competition is accepting applications from education technology teams that want to participate in pitching events with the hope of being named one of the "most promising" edtech startups of the year. Winners receive cash awards as well as exposure to potential mentors and business development champions and investors.

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Every Child a Graduate. Every Child Prepared for Life.