E-Rate Federal Funding for K-12 Schools

E-Rate Federal Funding for K-12 Schools (Deadline Sept. 30th, 2023)

Grants are always nice to have but are many times complex and cumbersome to get approved.

DOF is dedicated to empowering K-12 schools with comprehensive knowledge about E-Rate funding.

We understand the key eligibility criteria, deadlines, and submission timelines that K-12 schools must meet to qualify for E-Rate benefits, and that are essential for a successful application process.

Click here to view the E-Rate Applicant Process.

Step 1:

Complete Form 470 to open your competitive bidding process.

Step 2
Work with DOF to see how you can experience ultimate network performance.
Step 3
Complete Form 471 to provide information about your services and to apply for discounts.
Step 4
Reviewers at USAC will vet your application for completeness and accuracy.
Step 5
Once you receive confirmation of your funding commitment and your services begin, complete Form 486 to document what services have been approved for discounts.
Step 6

Work with your customer representative to begin the invoice process.

The E-Rate program, also known as the Schools and Libraries Program, is a government-funded program in the United States that provides discounts on internet access and telecommunications services for eligible schools and libraries. The program was established by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in 1996 as part of the Telecommunications Act. It is designed to help schools and libraries obtain affordable access to modern information technology services, with the goal of enhancing educational opportunities and promoting digital literacy.

To apply for and receive E-Rate funding, eligible schools and libraries in the United States must follow these general steps:

  1. Obtain a Service Provider Identification Number (SPIN) from the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC).
  2. Create an account and fill out the necessary forms on the E-Rate Productivity Center (EPC) website, which is managed by USAC.
  3. Determine the school or library’s category of service and funding priorities, such as broadband internet access or internal connections.
  4. Submit a competitive bidding process (such as a Request for Proposal or Request for Quote) to select a qualified service provider that meets the program requirements.
  5. Complete and submit the E-Rate application form, including the relevant funding requests and documentation.
  6. Wait for USAC to review the application and issue a funding decision.
  7. If approved, work with the selected service provider to implement the approved services and file any necessary compliance forms and reports.

Note that the E-Rate program has specific rules and deadlines, and schools and libraries are responsible for complying with program requirements and regulations. It’s recommended to consult the USAC website or seek assistance from an E-Rate consultant or service provider for additional guidance.

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