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Universal Service: Schools & Libraries

The FCC is working to bring every school in America into the information age. The Schools and libraries Universal Service program was established as part of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 to provide affordable telecommunications services to all eligible schools and libraries, especially those in rural and economically disadvantaged areas.

Schools & libraries Program and Application

For more information on and to obtain an application for the Universal Service Program for schools and libraries, please visit the Universal Service Administrative Company's Schools and libraries Division (SLD) Web Site or call their toll-free customer number at (888) 203-8100 for answers to questions concerning the Universal Service Application for Schools and libraries. The USAC SLD is an independent not-for-profit corporation established to administer universal service for Schools & libraries.

E-rate Community Use Success Stories

Submit your success story to the Commission here.

2010 Releases

Release
Date
Description FCC/DA#
11/8/10 E-Rate Deployed Ubiquitously 2011 Pilot Program: The Wireline Competition Bureau announces the application date for the E-rate deployed ubiquitously 2011 pilot program. DA 10-2128
Public Notice: Word | Acrobat
10/28/10 Cornerstones of Care, et al, Kansas City, MI: In this order, we address 10 appeals of decisions by the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) denying requests for funding under the E-rate program (more formally known as the schools and libraries universal service support program) on the ground that the consortia leaders did not provide sufficient evidence of their authority to represent the consortium members. DA 10-2071
Order: Word | Acrobat
Erratum(11/4/10): Word | Acrobat
10/18/10 Abbeville County School District, Abbeville, SC: In this order, the Bureau grants three requests from petitioners seeking to transfer funding commitments granted under the E-rate program. USAC denied petitioners requests to transfer E-rate funding commitments from schools that had been closed to other schools within the district. USAC found that the asset transfers did not fit into either category of transfers specifically permitted under the Commissions rules. We find that these transfers are permitted under the E-rate program rules. DA 10-1997
Order: Word | Acrobat
10/15/10 Integrity Communications, LTD Public Notice: Wireline Competition Bureau (Bureau) seeks comment on Integrity Communications, Inc. application for review of the Bureau's Integrity Order on Reconsideration in which the Bureau denied Integritys request for review of a decision by the Universal Service Administrative Company under the Commissions schools and libraries universal service support program. DA 10-1990
Public Notice: Word | Acrobat
9/28/10 Schools and libraries Sixth Report and Order (Broadband). In this order, the Commission upgrades and modernizes the E-rate program to bring fast, affordable Internet access to schools and libraries across the country, and eliminates rules that no longer serve their intended purpose. Specifically, the Commission adopts a number of the proposals put forward in the E-rate Broadband NPRM. These revisions fall into three conceptual categories: (1) enabling schools and libraries to better serve students, teachers, librarians, and their communities by providing more flexibility to select and make available the most cost-effective broadband and other communications services; (2) simplifying and streamlining the E-rate application process; and (3) improving safeguards against waste, fraud, and abuse. News Release (9/23/10): Word | Acrobat
Order:
Acrobat
Genachowski Statement:
Word | Acrobat
Copps Statement:
Word | Acrobat
McDowell Statement:
Word | Acrobat
Clyburn Statement:
Word | Acrobat
Baker Statement:
Word | Acrobat
8/11/10 Progressive Communications, Inc., Eastman, GA: In this order the WCB granted an appeal of a decision by the Universal Service Administrative Company concerning applications for discounted services under the E-rate program for funding year 2008. DA 10-1470
Order: Word | Acrobat
8/6/10 Beth Rivka School, Brooklyn, NY, et al: In this order the WCB denies requests by five applicants to substantively amend their applications many months after the filing deadline. Chicago Public Schools, Buffalo City School District, and Edison Schools Consortium sought to modify their FCC Form 471 applications to raise their discount levels so that they would be eligible to receive priority 2 funding. Beth Rivka School and Dale County School District sought to revise their applications to include additional services. DA 10-1447
Order: Word | Acrobat
7/8/10 Academy of Math and Science, Tucson, AZ, et al.: The Commission addresses 257 requests from petitioners seeking waivers of the FCC Form 471 application filing window deadline for various funding years under the E-rate program. The Commission grants 97 requests and 2 requests in part because the petitioners either timely filed their FCC Forms 471 or the petitioners have demonstrated that special circumstances exist justifying a waiver of the filing deadline. The Commission denies 158 requests and 2 requests in part because the petitioners failed to present special circumstances justifying a waiver of the filing deadline. FCC 10-122
Order: Word | Acrobat
7/7/10 Data Research Corporation: In this order, the Bureau grants a petition filed by Data Research Corporation (DRC) requesting that the Commission direct USAC to process certain funding requests under the E-rate program for funding year 2001 and grants DRCs request to withdraw its petition for reconsideration of a Commission order. DA 10-1265
Order: Word | Acrobat
7/1/10 E-Rate Bidding Process: Sought comment on proposed revisions to two E-rate program forms (FCC Forms 470 and 471). DA 10-1248
Public Notice: Word | Acrobat
Form 470: Word | Acrobat
Instructions: Word | Acrobat
Form 471: Word | Acrobat
Instructions: Word | Acrobat
7/1/10 Integrity Communications,Ltd., Corpus Christi, TX: Denied Integrity's petition for reconsideration of a Bureau order (DA 09-1946, rel. Aug. 28, 2009) that upheld USAC's audit finding that Integrity violated E-rate rules. DA 10-1244
Order: Word | Acrobat
7/1/10 Carryover of Unused Schools and libraries Universal Service Funds for Funding Yr 2010: Announced that, pursuant to section 54.507(a)(2) of the Commissions rules, $900 million in unused funds will be carried forward from Funding Years 2002 and 2005 through 2008 to increase the disbursements to schools and libraries in Funding Year 2010. DA 10-1243
Public Notice: Word | Acrobat
6/9/10 Comment Deadlines for the E-rate Broadband NPRM, the E-Rate ESL NPRM, and the Draft FY 2011 ESL: Comments are due by July 9, 2010 and reply comments are due by July 26, 2010, for the E-rate Broadband NPRM released by the Commission on May 20, 2010, and the ESL Order and FNPRM released by the Commission on December 2, 2009. WCB is also seeking comment on the draft Eligible Services list (ESL) proposed by the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) for E-rate funding year 2011. DA 10-1045
Public Notice: Word | Acrobat
6/4/10 The Bronx Charter School for Better Learning, Bronx, NY: In this order, WCB grants a request for review of a USAC decision that reduced funding on the ground that Bronx Charters documentation did not support the requested discount level. WCB finds that the school's assessment was correct and that USAC should have used a different method to calculate the discount level. WCB therefore remands the application to USAC for further action consistent with this order. DA 10-1018
Order: Word | Acrobat
6/4/10 Illinois State Board of Education, Chicago, IL: In this order, WCB grants a request for review of a USAC decision that denied funding on the ground that Illinois BOE's services were obtained pursuant to a tariff which was not covered by a valid FCC Form 470, rather than the applicant's state master contract.  WCB finds that the Illinois BOE was exercising a voluntary renewal option in its state master contract and, therefore, was operating under a valid contract.  WCB therefore remands the application to USAC for further action consistent with this order. DA 10-1019
Order: Word | Acrobat
6/2/10 EFT Public Notice: In this public notice, to facilitate the processing of the electronic funds transfer (EFT) announced by the Bureau in September 2009, the Bureau establishes the effective date of August 31, 2010 for the electronic disbursement requirement. After August 31, 2010, if a recipient of universal service support payments fails to provide the required financial institution information on its FCC Form 498 to enable payment by EFT, USAC will not make universal service support payments to that entity until the entity provides the required information. DA 10-270
Public Notice: Word | Acrobat
6/2/10 Alton Community Unit School District 11, Alton, IL et al: In this order, the Bureau addresses issues related to the USAC E-rate invoicing process and clarifies that an electronic funds transfer mechanism to distribute universal service support payments invoiced by service providers does not conflict with the Commission's directive that service providers must remit the E-rate discount amount to the applicant "prior to tendering or making use of the payment from the Administrator." DA 10-999
Order: Word | Acrobat
5/26/10 Agra Public School I-134, Agra, OK: In this order, WCB denies 104 appeals of decisions by USAC under the Universal Service E-rate program. WCB finds that the petitioners failed to submit their appeals to either the Commission or to USAC within 60 days as required by the Commissions rules. Additionally, the petitioners did not show special circumstances necessary for the Commission to waive the 60-day deadline for filing an appeal. DA 10-929
Order: Word | Acrobat
5/20/10 E-Rate Broadband Notice of Proposed Rulemaking: This Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) initiates one in a series of rulemaking proceedings to implement the National Broadband Plans vision of improving and modernizing the universal service programs. Specifically, this NPRM represents the first step toward upgrading the use of broadband by students and our communities through the E-rate program to create more opportunities for educational advances, economic growth, government delivery of services, and civic engagement. This NPRM seeks comment on a package of potential reforms to the E-rate program that could be implemented in funding year 2011 (July 1, 2011 June 30, 2012). The reforms proposed in this NPRM fall into three conceptual categories: streamlining the E-rate application process, providing greater flexibility to choose the most cost-effective and educationally useful broadband services, and expanding the reach of broadband to the classroom. FCC 10-83
NPRM: Word | Acrobat
5/20/10 Idaho Falls School District 91, Idaho Falls, ID: In this order, WCB grants a request for review of a USAC decision to deny a request by Idaho Falls to change its service provider. Specifically, the Bureau grants a waiver of the Commissions competitive bidding rules and permits USAC to allow Idaho Falls to change its service provider. WCB finds that Idaho Falls leased WAN service should have been categorized as Internet access rather than telecommunications by USAC. Idaho Falls failure to seek bids for this service as Internet access was arguably a violation of the Commissions competitive bidding requirements because of the possibility that its FCC Form 470 did not describe its desired service sufficiently to enable potential service providers to submit bids. WCB finds, however, that the facts in this case rise to the level of the special circumstances necessary for a waiver of the Commissions rules. DA 10-888
Order: Word | Acrobat
5/20/10 Expanets of North America, Englewood, CA: In this order, WCB grants a request for review of a USAC decision that rescinded E-rate funds committed to the Rock Point Community School because the service was not installed by the September 30 annual deadline. We find that special circumstances exist to justify a waiver of the Commissions rules because the service provider, Expanets of North America, was at most only a month late in installing its services and such a short delay in service implementation does not warrant the complete rejection of funding. DA 10-887
Order: Word | Acrobat
5/20/10 Harvest Preparatory School, Yuma, AZ: In this order, WCB grants a request for waiver filed by the Harvest Preparatory School (Harvest) of the deadline for seeking an extension of the services delivery implementation deadline from USAC under the E-rate program. We find that special circumstances exist to justify a waiver of USACs deadline for the five funding requests at issue funding request numbers 1348538, 1349281, 1349304, 1349341, and 1349381 as part of FCC Form 471 application number 486149 for funding year 2005. DA 10-886
Order: Word | Acrobat
5/20/10 Children of Peace School, Chicago, IL, et al: In this order, WCB grants 25 appeals of USAC decisions that reduce or deny E-rate funding for various funding years because USAC found that the applicants failed to timely submit FCC Forms 486. As the Bureau found in Alaska Gateway School District and Alcona County library, we find that complete rejection of these applications is not warranted, given that the applicants missed a USAC procedural deadline and did not violate a Commission rule. Therefore, we remand the underlying applications to USAC for further action consistent with this order. DA 10-885
Order: Word | Acrobat
5/13/10 FY 2010 E-Rate PIA Procedures Approval Letter: In this letter, WCB approves USAC's program integrity assurance (PIA) procedures for E-rate. DA 10-839
Letter: Word | Acrobat
4/14/10 Lowest Corresponding Price Public Notice: WCB seeks comment on petition filed by the United States Telecom Association and CTIA The Wireless Association for declaratory ruling to clarify several issues involving one element of the E-rate program, formally known as the schools and libraries universal service support program. Petitioners seek clarification of the scope and meaning of the Commissions lowest corresponding price rule. The rule mandates that service providers cannot charge schools, school districts, libraries, library consortia, or consortia including any of these entities a price above the lowest corresponding price for supported services, unless the Commission, with respect to interstate services or the state commission with respect to intrastate services, finds that the lowest corresponding price is not compensatory. DA 10-627
Public Notice: Word | Acrobat
3/9/10 E-rate Community Use Notice of Proposed Rulemaking Public Notice: On February 19, 2010, the FCC released an order and notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) enabling schools that receive funding from the E-rate program to allow members of the general public to use the schools Internet access during non-operating hours through funding year 2010 and seeking comment on revising its rules to make this change permanent. The FCC set the comment and reply comment deadline for the NPRM as 30 and 45 days, respectively, after publication of the summary of the NPRM in the Federal Register. On March 5, 2010, a summary of the NPRM appeared in the Federal Register. Accordingly, comments will be due on April 5, 2010, and reply comments will be due on April 19, 2010. DA 10-396
Public Notice: Word | Acrobat
2/19/10 E-rate Community Use Order: In this order, the Commission waives, on its own motion, through funding year 2010 (which ends June 30, 2011), rules that currently discourage public use of resources funded by E-rate. In the notice of proposed rulemaking, the Commission seeks comment on revising its rules to make the change permanent. This change will leverage universal service funding to serve a larger population at no increased cost to the E-rate program. The general public will be able to use the Internet access already present in schools, at the schools discretion, for purposes such as job searches and applications, digital literacy programs, and online access to governmental services and resources. FCC 10-33
Order: Word | Acrobat
2/16/10 Protecting Children in the 21st Century Act Extension Public Notice: The Wireline Competition Bureau extends the deadline to file comments on modifying the E-rate rules to comply with the Protecting Children in the 21st Century Act to February 25, 2010 and extends the deadline for filing reply comments to March 12, 2010. DA 10-248
Public Notice: Word | Acrobat
2/2/10 State of Louisiana Department of Education, et. al: The Commission addresses requests for waivers of its rules filed by the State of Louisiana Department of Education, the Recovery School District, and the New Orleans Public Schools, under the E-rate program, generally seeking to make changes to their applications for funding years 2004, 2007, 2008, and 2009. The requested changes are not ministerial or clerical errors, pursuant to the Commissions Bishop Perry Order, and thus require Commission action. FCC 10-27
Order: Word | Acrobat
1/20/10 Protecting Children in the 21st Century Act Public Notice: On November 5, 2009, the Commission released a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) seeking comment on revising rules regarding the schools and libraries universal service support mechanism, also known as the E-rate program, to comply with the requirements of the Protecting Children in the 21st Century Act. Among other things, section 215 of the Protecting Children in the 21st Century Act, titled Promoting Online Safety in Schools, revised section 254(h)(5)(B) of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, by adding a new certification requirement for elementary and secondary schools that have computers with Internet access and receive discounts under the E-rate program. The Commission also proposed to revise related Commission rules to reflect existing statutory language more accurately. Interested parties may file comments on or before February 18, 2010, and reply comments on or before March 5, 2010. DA 10-102
Public Notice: Word | Acrobat
1/13/10 Clarification Regarding Comment Cycle for Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking On E-rate Eligible Services list: In this PN, WCB clarifies that EDOCS had erroneously set comment dates for the E-rate Eligible Services list FNPRM. The comment cycle will not be set until after the Federal Register publication, which has not yet happened. As soon as a summary of the further notice is published in the Federal Register, WCB will release a public notice with the correct comment deadlines. We will consider all comments that already have been filed in response to the FNPRM and note that commenters may refile or supplement comments already filed. DA 10-65
Public Notice: Word | Acrobat

2009 Releases

Release
Date
Description FCC/DA#
12/2/09 E-rate Funding Year 2010 Eligible Services list and Seeks Further Comment on Eligible Services: The report and order releases the Funding Year 2010 E-rate Eligible Service list, concluding that interconnected VoIP service is eligible and should continue to receive E-rate program funding. Additionally, the report and order clarifies the E-rate program eligibility of text messaging, video on-demand servers, ethernet, web hosting, wireless LAN controllers, VoIP-related services and requirements, and virtualization software. The report and order also clarifies that telephone broadcast messaging, unbundled warranties, power distribution units, softphones, interactive white boards and e-mail archiving are ineligible for universal service funding. The further notice of proposed rulemaking (FNPRM) tentatively concludes that firewall services, anti-virus/anti-spam software, scheduling services, web hosting, and wireless Internet access applications should not be eligible for E-rate funding. It also seeks comment on the tentative conclusion that eligible products and services should be listed in the ESL as opposed to being individually listed in the rules, and that USAC should be required to submit any proposed changes to the ESL to the Commission by March 30 of each year, instead of June 30, as currently required. The FNPRM also seeks comment on eliminating the requirement that the ESL be released by public notice. Comments are due 30 days after publication in the Federal Register and reply comments are due 45 days after publication in the Federal Register. FCC 09-105
Report and Order and Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking: Word | Acrobat
Eligible Services list: Word | Acrobat
11/5/09 Protecting Children in the 21st Century Act Notice of Proposed Rulemaking: This notice of proposed rulemaking proposes revising the Commissions rules for the E-rate program to comply with the requirements of the Protecting Children in the 21st Century Act. The Protecting Children in the 21st Century Act added a new certification requirement for elementary and secondary schools that have computers with Internet access and receive discounts under the E-rate program. The notice of proposed rulemaking also proposes to revise related Commission rules to reflect existing statutory language more accurately. Comments are due 30 days after publication in the Federal Register and reply comments are due 45 days after publication in the Federal Register. FCC 09-96
Notice of Proposed Rulemaking: Word | Acrobat
11/3/09 Education, Erate and Broadband Issues Public Notice: Comment Sought on Broadband Needs in Education, Including Changes to E-rate Program to Improve Broadband Deployment. Comments are due November 20, 2009 and reply comments are due December 11, 2009. DA 09-2376
Public Notice: Word | Acrobat
10/21/09 Lazo Technologies, Inc.: Wireline Competition Bureau (WCB) seeks comment on a petition filed by Lazo Technologies for reconsideration of a WCB E-rate order (DA 09-1797). DA 09-2250
Order: Word | Acrobat
10/21/09 Integrity Communications, LTD.: Wireline Competition Bureau (WCB) seeks comment on a petition filed by Integrity Communications for reconsideration of a WCB E-rate order (DA 09-1946). DA 09-2249
Order: Word | Acrobat
10/20/09 Iosco Regional Educational Service Agency, Tawas City, MI: The Division denies appeals of decisions by USAC by an applicant failing to pay the full non-discounted portion of the services received from its service provider and allowing its chosen service provider to act as a consultant during the competitive bidding process, both in violation of Commission rules. DA 09-2248
Order: Word | Acrobat
10/20/09 Hancock County School District, New Cumberland, WV, et al.: The Division denies 7 appeals of USAC decisions denying E-rate funding on the grounds that the applicants sought discounts on telecommunications from non-eligible telecommunications carriers, in violation of Commission rules. DA 09-2247
Order: Word | Acrobat
10/20/09 Hemet Unified School District, Hemet, CA: The Division grants an appeal of a USAC decision to deny a request for E-rate funding based on a late-filed request for an extension of the deadline for implementation of services. DA 09-2246
Order: Word | Acrobat
10/20/09 Exigent Technologies, Parsippany, NJ: The Division denies an appeal of a USAC decision to seek recovery of E-rate funds. Exigent admitted to multiple violations of the rules, including improper service provider involvement in the competitive bidding process and failure to require applicants to pay the non-discounted portion of the price of services and equipment. DA 09-2245
Order: Word | Acrobat
10/20/09 Eagle Hill School, Hardwick, MA, et al.: The Division denies 3 appeals of USAC decisions denying E-rate funding on the grounds that the applicants requested support for dormitory or residence rooms and for pre-K programs, neither of which was eligible for support. DA 09-2244
Order: Word | Acrobat
10/20/09 Clark County School District, Las Vegas, NV, et al.: The Division denies 3 appeals of USAC decisions denying E-rate funding for funding years 2004-2008 on the grounds that the applicants requested ineligible services. Specifically, the applicants sought funding for dark fiber service after funding year 2003, when dark fiber was no longer eligible for support. DA 09-2243
Order: Word | Acrobat
10/20/09 Amy Biehl Charter High School, Albuquerque, NM, and Weld library District, Greely, CO: The Division denies 2 requests for waiver of certain E-rate competitive bidding rules. The Division denies one request for waiver of the rule requiring the filing of an FCC Form 470 prior to entering into an agreement for services and another request for waiver of all E-rate filing deadlines. DA 09-2242
Order: Word | Acrobat
10/20/09 Keyport School District, Keyport, NJ: The Division grants an appeal of a USAC decision to deny a request for E-rate funding based on USACs assessment that the applicant violated the Commissions competitive bidding rules. DA 09-2241
Order: Word | Acrobat
10/20/09 Hazelwood School District, Florissant, MO: The Division grants an appeal of a USAC decision to modify a request for E-rate funding based on USACs assessment that the services requested did not qualify as eligible services. DA 09-2240
Order: Word | Acrobat
8/28/09 Integrity Communications, Ltd. Corpus Christi, TX: In this order, the Bureau denies the request for review of Integrity Communications, Ltd. (Integrity), finding that USAC acted consistent with its policies in requiring Integrity to file a compliance plan and suspending funding. DA 09-1946
Order: Word | Acrobat
8/17/09 Howe Independent School District 67, Howe, Oklahoma: Telecommunications Access Policy Division denies an appeal of a USAC decision that rescinded E-rate funding already committed to the Howe Independent School District 67 (Howe ISD) for discounted services for funding year 2004. The order finds that Howe ISD requested ineligible services and directs USAC to continue its commitment adjustment recovery actions regarding this matter. DA 09-1822
Order: Word | Acrobat
8/12/09 Lazo Technologies, Inc., et al.: The Wireline Competition Bureau denies a request for review filed by Lazo Technologies, Inc., Hill Professional Services, and Advanced Technology Solutions South (collectively, petitioners) of a decision by USAC denying payment for work performed by the petitioners for the Dallas Independent School District under the E-rate program after concluding that the underlying contract for E-rate services violated the Commissions competitive bidding requirements and program rules. The Bureau affirms USACs decision and finds that USAC properly denied the petitioners request for payments. DA 09-1797
Order: Word | Acrobat
7/31/09 Carryover of Unused Federal Universal Funds For Funding Year 2009: In this order, the Bureau announces that $900 million in prior unused E-rate funds will be carried forward to increase disbursements to schools and libraries in Funding Year 2009. DA 09-1734
Order: Word | Acrobat
7/21/09 Minford Local Schools, Minford, OH: In this order, we grant the request for waiver of Minford Local Schools (Minford) of the FCC Form 471 application filing window deadline for funding year 2008 under the schools and libraries universal service support mechanism, also known as the E-rate program. DA 09-1567
Order: Word | Acrobat
6/2/09 WCB Seeks Comment on Proposed Funding Year 2010 E-rate Eligible Services list. DA 09-1233
Public Notice: Word |Acrobat
5/12/09 Judy Green: The Commission debar Judy Green from all activities associated with the schools and libraries universal service support mechanism. FCC 09-37
Notice of Debarment: Word | Acrobat
4/14/09 Albert Lea Area Schools, Albert Lea, Minnesota, et al.: The Telecommunications Access Policy Division grants 39 appeals and denies 31 appeals of decisions by the Universal Service Administrative Company denying requests for funding under the schools and libraries universal service mechanism for funding years 1999 through 2008 due to the applicant's failure to comply with the Commission's 28-day competitive bidding requirement. DA 09-825
Order: Word | Acrobat
4/2/09 Schools and libraries, Letter Approving Funding Year 2009 PIA Procedures: In this letter, the Wireline Competition Bureau (Bureau) notifies the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) that the Bureau has approved the Schools and libraries Funding Year 2009 Program Integrity Assurance FCC Form 471 Review procedures. DA 09-762
Letter: Word | Acrobat
1/16/09 Schools and libraries Program, "Table C" recovery issues: Responded to the outstanding policy issues regarding recovery of funds in the schools and libraries universal service program, also known as the E-rate program, on which USAC has sought formal guidance from the Commission. DA 09-86
Letter: Word | Acrobat
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