On March 19, 2013, Funds For Learning, its outside counsel, and Dr. Anthony D. Machado of Miami-Dade County Public Schools met with the Federal Communications Commission to discuss “the funding crisis that is threatening the E-rate program and the framework for a solution to it.” The discussion and analysis included:
how the absence of Priority Two funding is encouraging applicants to make certain Priority One purchasing decisions that make little or no sense, economically or otherwise;
the logical disconnect between the goal of ubiquitous 100 Mbps, let alone Gigabit, connectivity for schools and libraries and the absence of E-rate funding for the LAN infrastructure and upgrades that schools and libraries will need to use that kind of high-speed connectivity effectively or even at all;
the unique and much-too-easily-abused “blank check” character of the E-rate program, which, a decade ago, the USAC Task Force on the Prevention of Waste, Fraud and Abuse recommended be eliminated; and
a framework, based on the Task Force’s 2003 recommendation, to address the E-rate funding crisis.
Funds For Learning’s ex parte comment may be found at http://apps.fcc.gov/ecfs/document/view?id=7022134821. The PowerPoint presentation referenced in the meeting may be accessed at http://apps.fcc.gov/ecfs/document/view?id=7022134822.
More information about the Funds For Learning Proposal may be found at http://www.fundsforlearning.com/FFLProposal.php.