Last week was a significant week for the E-rate program. The week started with Tom Wheeler officially stepping in as the new Chairman of the FCC, and it ended with E-rate Modernization reply comments being submitted. But that was last week. What about this week? Where does E-rate reform go from here? The internal machinations at the FCC are a mystery – and I don’t have a clue what will happen next, or when it will happen. But I do have a few ideas about what the rest of us outside of the FCC offices can be doing right now.
- Read, understand, and accurately articulate the perspectives of others. I have been reading comments and reply comments submitted by others, such as the State E-rate Coordinators Association. While I disagree with some of the other reform proposals, I think it is important that I understand them and that I can accurately explain them to others. Recommendation: Let’s all take time to get to know and understand the other person’s point of view.
- Identify common ground. In some cases, it can be easier to focus on differences and overlook areas of agreement. I find this to be true particularly when it comes to E-rate Reform. Recommendation: Let’s all take time to find and enumerate areas of common ground.
- Keep the dialog going. As we better understand others’ ideas and strive to find areas of agreement, let’s keep talking and communicating. Groups should be coming together to talk, synthesize ideas, and so on. Furthermore, we should deliver the outcome of those meeting to the FCC. Recommendation: Let’s help the FCC by getting together ourselves and develop comprehensive solutions that we can all support.
I pledge to do these three steps. Will you join me? If so, please read these Reply Comments:
> E-rate Reform Coalition Reply Comments
> Funds For Learning Reply Comments
And then let’s talk. I am on Twitter (@jdharrington) or available via email.