The Government Accounting Office (GAO) recently released a report that highlights the challenges that school districts have when a portion of their student population does not have high speed Internet access at home. The GAO report acknowledges that “…Internet access is crucial for students both in and out of the classroom. School-age children with little or no access at home may have difficulty completing homework, putting them at risk of falling behind better-connected peers…” The FCC’s E-rate program provides school districts to purchase discounted Internet equipment and services, however, the E-rate funds cannot be used off school property.
The GAO report is recommending that the FCC “…assess and report on the potential benefits, costs, and challenges of making wireless access off school grounds eligible for E-rate…”
The full GAO report can be found here.