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Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Nix the NIF

The program reform idea from this morning's shower: in addition to freeing up funding by kicking services out of the program, the FCC should free up funding by kicking locations out of the program.  If the goal is to bring broadband to 99% of students, why are we funding Non-Instructional Facilities (NIFs)?  NIFs don't bring broadband to students.

If voice gets tossed out of the program, it won't make much of a difference.  Digital transmission service from an eligible location to anywhere is eligible, so the WAN link(s) from the NIF to the rest of the district are eligible.  And if the district's main Internet connection comes into the NIF, then it can be applied for as a district.  To simplify things, I'd say that the E-Rate will not cover separate service for NIFs, but a service shared between a NIF and eligible locations should be eligible.  So if your NIF has its own Internet connection, that would not be eligible, but if the NIF shares a district-wide Internet connection, cost-allocation would be waived for administrative convenience.

That's as far as I got before the hot water ran out.

1 comment:

  1. I was rereading a speech from Commissioner Pai and found:
    "...funding classrooms and learning centers instead of non-instructional buildings like garages and athletic facilities." (

    So I have to admit that the Commissioner was out ahead of me on this one.