E-Rate - or, more precisely, Schools and Libraries Division (SLD) of the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) - provides discounts to assist schools, school systems, and libraries in the United States to obtain affordable telecommunications and Internet access. Since the inception of E-Rate in 1997, the Georgia DOE (GaDOE) has filed for and received E-Rate discounts to build the Statewide K-12 Network. The GaDOE has received over $500 million in E-Rate funding. Although there is a great deal of money available through E-Rate for telecommunications infrastructure, the process is somewhat complex and timing of certain forms and applications are critical. Learn more..
System Technology Planning
System technology plans are needed to ensure coherent, effective use of federal, state and local education technology funds to support student achievement. To be eligible for E-Rate and competitive grant funding, systems are required to have current, approved technology plans. A technology plan is designed to improve education and should cover the entire funding year (July 1 to June 30) but not more than three years. 2013 Tech Plan Rubric
The GaDOE began planning and building the Georgia Statewide K-12 Network in 1996. Since E-Rate funding became available, the GaDOE has complied with all SLD regulations while applying for and received funding discounts for network services. Currently the network provides Internet Access for all 180 public school districts as well as State Schools and State Charter Schools. The network has become a stable and efficient tool used extensively by Georgia educators and students. Learn more..