Will we see eRate funds before the Thanksgiving turkey? Don't bet on it. Between Ira Fishman's recent departure and McCain's latest machinations—much not to mention the new re-examination (page 1) of federal spending on school technology—those telecommunications discounts may take a few more detours on their way to your door.

In short, it's inadvisable to rely too heavily on federal funds alone in the effort to launch programs that will make technology an integral part of your schools. Technology fundraising programs that capitalize on opportunities in both the public and private sectors, however, will have

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