The E-rate program is critical for K-12 organizations that lack the funding to procure appropriate technology, such as networking and cyber security solutions (e.g., firewalls, wireless network security, etc.). But understanding the program — as well as confirming your E-rate eligibility — can be daunting.
Episode 3: The E-rate Fear Less Solution
On the third episode of the E-rate Fear Less series, Komplement CEO Holly Davis discusses school eligibility, discounts levels and the competitive bidding process.
E-rate discounts are based on the category of service requested, level of poverty, urban/rural status of the population served and the level of participation of students in the Nation School Lunch Program (NSLP).
- School districts derive their discount, for purposes of determining their level of poverty, from the total percentage of students eligible for the NSLP in the school district.
- Libraries derive their discount, for purposes of determining their level of poverty, from the NSLP eligibility percentage of the public-school district in which the main branch of the library is located.
- Rural discount eligibility is determined at the school district or library system level. If more than 50 percent of the schools in a school district or libraries in a library system are considered rural, the district or system is eligible for the rural discount. Note: Non-instructional facilities (NIFs) are not included in this percentage calculation.
Once eligibility is confirmed, it is very important to understand that the government requires a fair and competitive bidding process. Please contact a SonicWall E-rate expert to help guide your organization through the rules and guidelines of the E-rate process.
E-rate technology discounts with SonicWall
SonicWall network and cyber security solutions meet the needs of school districts at the highest efficacy — all at price points that fit within K12 budgets.
If you are utilizing E-rate funding to assist you in buying your networking and cyber security solutions, SonicWall can help. Our team of E-rate funding experts ensure your SonicWall solution aligns with the rules and regulations of the E-rate program. SonicWall provides services in the following areas:
- Managed Internal Broadband Services
- Internal Connections
- Basic Maintenance for Internal Connections
With the most comprehensive channel program in the industry, combined with additional E-rate discounts, SonicWall and its partners are best positioned to meet the needs of K12 customers and help them take full advantage of the funding E-rate provides for securing their networks.
If you are an eligible K12 organization, please contact your preferred SonicWall reseller for information on E-rate benefits and discounts, or visit the SonicWall E-rate page for information, tools and guidance.
E-rate Episode Video Series for K-12 School Districts
- Episode 1: An Explanation of E-rate
- Episode 2: Navigating the E-rate Program: Forms, Filling Cycles & Rules
- Episode 4: E-rate ‘Fear Less’ Technology Infrastructure
- Episode 5: Frequently Asked Questions: The E-rate Program
What is E-rate?
To help offset funding and staffing shortages, the U.S. Department of Education and the FCC launched the E-rate program, which helps make telecommunications and information services more affordable for schools, campuses, districts and libraries.
The E-rate program is operated by Universal Service Administration Company (USAC), which has a core focus of providing underfunded verticals the access to affordable technology and security services. This includes schools, libraries, rural healthcare organizations and more.
USAC provides a yearly Eligible Services List (ESL), which outlines which types of products and services can be procured via E-rate program discounts.