FCC Releases Data from E-rate program and Broadband usage survey
Federal Communications Commission
News Media Information 202 / 418-0500445 12th Street, S.W.
Washington, D. C. 20554
This is an unofficial announcement of Commission action. Release of the full text of a Commission order constitutes official action.
See MCI v. FCC. 515 F 2d 385 (D.C. Circ 1974).
January 6, 2011
Mark Wigfield, 202-418-0253
Email: mark.wigfield @fcc.gov
FCC RELEASES DATA FROM E-RATE PROGRAM AND BROADBAND USAGE SURVEY
Survey finds faster broadband needed in schools and libraries
Washington, D.C. The Federal Communications Commission today released a report on the
state of broadband connectivity at schools and libraries receiving funds from the federal E-rate
program, which provides support to help connect schools and libraries to the Internet.
The report is based on data from a survey conducted in 2010 that examined the success and
challenges related to broadband use faced by schools and libraries. This survey will help the
Commission make data-driven policy decisions for the E-rate program by providing information
on the educational and technological needs of schools and libraries.
The survey was commissioned by the FCC and conducted by Harris Interactive, Inc., an
independent national marketing research firm. Specifically, the survey found:
Almost All Have At Least Some Broadband: 95% of all E-rate survey respondents have
some form of terrestrial broadband connection to at least one facility, while 2% use satellite
and 3% use dial-up.
Faster Broadband Speeds Needed: However, nearly 80% of all survey respondents say their
broadband connections do not fully meet their current needs.
o Slow connection speed is the primary reason current Internet connectivity does
not meet the needs for 55% of these respondents.
Cost is a Big Factor: 39% of E-rate survey respondents cite cost of service as a barrier in
meeting their Internet needs, and 27% cite cost of installation as a barrier.
E-Book Use to Greatly Increase: 56% of all E-rate survey respondents expect to implement
or expand the use of digital textbooks in the next two to three years, and 45% expect to
implement or expand the use of handheld devices for educational purposes.
Most Have Speeds Greater Than 3 Mbps: 10% of E-rate survey respondents have broadband
speeds of 100 Mbps or greater and most (55%) have broadband speeds greater than 3 Mbps.
o More than half of school districts (60%) subscribe to a fiber optic connection.
o 66% of respondents provide some wireless connectivity for staff, students or
E-Mail Essential for Schools: For schools, e-mail is the most-used application (almost all
schools, 98%, regularly use or access e-mail), and the most essential (69% consider it the
Libraries Rely on Online Reference Materials:For libraries, online reference materials are
both the most used application (86% of staff and patrons regularly use or access online
reference materials) and the most essential (62% consider it the most essential).
The E-rate program, which provides more than $2.25 billion annually to support telephone and
Internet connections at schools and libraries across the country, was recently upgraded to allow
schools and libraries to get higher-speed broadband at lower cost (FCC 10-175).
News about the Federal Communications Commission can also be found on the
Commission's web site www.fcc.gov.
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