Greetings WUSD Staff,
I know that many of you are out enjoying summer fun, but I wanted to share some information regarding potential changes at the Federal level that if put in place, would have a negative impact on Washington USD and other districts across the nation. Please take a moment to read through the information below and join the movement to protect our students by clicking on the links below. Yes, please click!
“Net neutrality is the basic principle that prohibits Internet service providers . . . from speeding up, slowing down, or blocking any content, applications, or websites you want to use.” Net neutrality was adopted in 2015 and creates rules to keep the Internet free and open and is seriously at risk of being repealed by the new administration’s FCC. If we lost Net Neutrality, the large service companies (AT&T, Comcast, and Verizon) could “censor” the Internet by determining which sites will be blocked, sped up, or slowed down. It would remove the equal playing field for all web content and application providers to have equal access of users to their content. Take a minute to watch the short YouTube video put out by Fight for the Future that explains Why Net Neutrality Makes the Internet Great.
CUE (www.cue.org) is collecting teacher and administrator responses that will be sent directly to the FCC – please take a moment to complete this form and to let your voice be heard!
Washington USD has benefitted from the Federal E-Rate program over the last two years through the recabling of Elkhorn Village, Westfield Village, Southport, and Bridgeway Island, 80% discounts on WAVE circuits that provide Internet connectivity to classrooms, and 20% discounts on phone services. The total savings for the 2016-2017 school year was approximately $370,000. The projected savings for 2017-2018 for phone service, Internet service, and new network equipment (pending funding approval) at River City, Stonegate, Southport, Westmore Oaks, and Bridgeway Island is approximately $770,000. If there were no Federal E-Rate discounts after the 2017-2018 school year, the ongoing costs of services starting in 2018-2019 would be over $270,000 and there would be no future upgrades in cabling or network equipment for Yolo Education Center, Washington Middle College Charter, or Alyce Norman, the remaining three sites needing upgrades. As you can clearly see, the Federal E-Rate program has had a tremendous impact on supporting connectivity to classrooms in Washington USD and not having these discounts in the future will severely impact what we are able to do beyond connectivity.
Please take a moment to advocate for the continuance of Federal ed tech funding with E-Rate being one of the priorities by going to www.iste.org/Act4EdTech. This will generate a form letter to be sent our Congressional representatives: Sen. Diane Feinstein, Sen. Kamala Harris, and Rep. Doris Matsui.
These are two important priorities that are critical to the work that we do in teaching students and serving the West Sacramento community. Please help rally behind protecting Net Neutrality and E-Rate by clicking on the links above to have your voice heard.
If you have any questions, please contact me by email or phone. Thank you!
KIM HARRISON, CCTO
Director II, Technology