What is E-Rate?

E-Rate is the schools and libraries program run by USAC to help these institutions provide telecommunications and Internet access to the communities they serve. Most K-12 public and private (not-for-profit) schools and public and private libraries are eligible to participate.

E-rate funding

Government programs can seem like alphabet soup when it comes to acronyms and other jargon. E-Rate is a program run by USAC, The Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC), which is an independent, not-for-profit corporation. USAC has been designated by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) as the administrator of universal service. Universal service is the notion that all Americans should have access to modern, quality telecommunications infrastructure regardless of location, socio-economic status, disabilities or other limiting factors. In brief, USAC is there to help ensure everyone has equal access to telecommunications and the Internet in the United States.

How Can My School or Library Benefit?

Each year, USAC publishes a list of technologies that will qualify for funding based on direction from the FCC and other stakeholders. Schools and libraries with plans to upgrade their Internet connectivity may be eligible for reimbursement for some or all of their technology investment, including for broadband and fiber connections, firewalls, routers and caches. Untangle’s NG Firewall can be an integral part of your plan.

E-rate funding

NG Firewall helps you make the most of your broadband investment:

  • Keep your network CIPA (Childrens Internet Protection Act) compliant with web content filtering and application control, as well as security measures for data privacy.

  • Ensure quality of service (QoS) with bandwidth optimization and web caching, as well as the ability to block, prioritize or optimize traffic of all types.

  • Get granular control over every challenging traffic type with layer 7 deep packet inspection (DPI), which gives you the ability to tackle challenging applications like BitTorrent and UltraSurf that may be inroads for malware and illegal downloads.

What Qualifies Under the New 2018 Guidelines?

Untangle’s NG Firewall will qualify under Category II, which includes both firewalls and routers. Professional services and technical support may also be eligible. Please see the USAC Eligible Services List.

Applying for E-Rate Funding

Untangle recommends that you check with your district and state technology coordinators to see if resources are available to help you with your application. Additionally, there are many paid E-Rate application services available. Unfortunately, Untangle is unable to assist you directly with the application process.

Resources