SETDA Urges FCC to Protect School Broadband Access
On December 14, the Federal Communications Commission will vote, on a Declaratory Report and Order, and a second Order that together will eliminate the agency’s Net Neutrality regulations. The targeted regulations place limitations on internet service providers, including prohibiting them from blocking or degrading internet traffic, or selling ‘fast lanes’ that prioritize particular internet services over others. Chairman Pai proposes to eliminate these requirements and replace them with transparency obligations requiring ISPs to publicly describe their carriage practices.
SETDA’s members remain strongly committed to helping all schools meet the broadband goals adopted by the FCC as part of the 2014 E-rate modernization and to ensuring students and teachers have affordable access to the innovative digital content, including open educational resources, required to support effective teaching and learning. State leadership for equitable access to high quality broadband is detailed in several SETDA publications:
- The Broadband Imperative II: Equitable Access for Learning
- State K12 Broadband Leadership: Driving Connectivity and Access
- State Wi-Fi Leadership for Fostering Digital Learning Ready K-12 Schools
As the FCC prepares to vote on eliminating the agency’s Net Neutrality framework, we urge commissioners to ensure that connecting schools to affordable high-speed broadband remains a national priority and that students have access to the digital content and tools they need to prepare for graduation.
Students and teachers – especially vulnerable learners in rural and low-income communities – must not be disenfranchised by this proposed change in federal policy. SETDA urges the commission to take the steps required to deliver a level telecommunications and digital learning playing field for the nation’s schools.