How do we ensure every student and educator has high-speed connectivity, at school and at home?

States and school districts have spent years working to connect nearly every school in America to the Internet.  But, today, simply being connected is not enough.  To make the most of new online tools (interactive lessons, learning games and other collaborative platforms), students and educators must have broadband access.

 

Overview

  • Most schools and homes do not have adequate broadband connectivity

    • 97% of public schools have basic access to the Internet via E-rate; experts project a 100Mb+ bandwidth need per school to support rich interactive cloud-based content, but most schools have less than 5Mb of bandwidth available.
    • Almost 90% of households with incomes over $100,000 subscribe to broadband compared to 32% of households with incomes less than $15,000.
    • Although E-rate has boosted broadband adoption, 80% of E-rate schools report that their bandwidth is inadequate to meet their needs.
  • Inadequate wireless infrastructure within schools

    • Many schools have sufficient bandwidth but not enough network equipment to support wireless access to broadband from tablets and phones.
    • Cost is the main obstacle to sufficient connectivity - E-rate can discount costs of broadband, network gear, and maintenance by 20-90%.
    • Limited resources with capabilities to implement and maintain networks
    • IT departments at school districts do not staff resources with expertise related to specific implementations.
    • Few outsourced service providers have viable offerings.
  • See it

 

 

Current Efforts

  • Non-profit profiling existing internet infrastructure at every school with plans to grow a “geek squad” that assists schools in deploying 100 Mb+ broadband infrastructure

  • Non-profit that partners with cable companies to offer students in need access to broadband at home for $9.95 per month

  • Offers a model where districts do not rely on capital expenditures but operating expenditures (via storage on the cloud, etc.)