The Time Is Now—Capture Your Share of E-rate Funding

October 18, 2017 - 0 Comments

In a new eSchool News special report, Supporting a Digital Transformation in Schools: How to build a network infrastructure that will have you poised for ed-tech success, the experts at eSchool News highlight an important—and often overlooked—fact. E-rate creates an “unprecedented opportunity for K-12 districts to upgrade their network infrastructure so they can take advantage of the digital revolution. The opportunity is there for the taking… [and] the time [to take advantage] is now.”

We know that nearly $4 billion in E-rate funding is available for Funding Year 2018, and that most schools and libraries are entitled to some support. However, we also understand that E-rate applications—particularly for Category Two funding, which helps pay for managed Wi-Fi, internal connectivity, and basic maintenance—have been on the decline and are down by 29 percent since 2015. (For more interesting facts about E-rate and tips on how to make the most of your E-rate dollars, click here.)

The reasons for this decrease in applications aren’t clear. But if a school or library is reluctant to apply for E-rate because of the program’s complexity, the eSchool News special report can be a helpful source of information. The report discusses the importance of a robust infrastructure to digital transformation and shares insights into how schools and libraries can assess their individual requirements and leverage partnerships to realize the greatest benefit from the E-rate program. The report also provides compelling examples of two schools—Wayne Highland School District in Wayne County, Pa., and El Centro Elementary School District in Calif.—who have used E-rate with great success.

Finally, the report talks about the Cisco Digital Education Platform and the ways Cisco solutions can enable and support a school’s or library’s digital journey. To learn more about E-rate and how Cisco can help, visit


In an effort to keep conversations fresh, Cisco Blogs closes comments after 60 days. Please visit the Cisco Blogs hub page for the latest content.