If you still haven’t received a funding letter for Year Four of the eRate, don’t panic—the Schools and Libraries Division (SLD) of the Universal Service Administrative Co. said it has suspended notification for some 3,000 to 4,000 applicants until after the Oct. 27 deadline for certifying compliance with the Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA).

These applicants will have extra time to certify their compliance with the law, which requires schools receiving eRate discounts for their internet access or internal connections to adopt internet safety policies and block students’ access to inappropriate materials online.

Only schools that were notified of their Year Four funding in waves one through six of decision letters must file a revised Form 486 certifying their compliance with CIPA by Oct. 27. The agency mailed its sixth wave of letters Sept. 28.

SLD officials decided to hold off on mailing all successive waves until after the Oct. 27 deadline because they wanted to give applicants enough time to review their funding and complete the paperwork necessary for certifying compliance, said Mel Blackwell, a spokesman for the agency.

If you’re among those applicants who haven’t received a letter yet, you’ll have 120 days from the date your letter is postmarked to certify your compliance with CIPA, according to Blackwell.

But SLD recommends that you check the Funding Commitments section of its web site to verify whether or not you are listed in waves one through six first; it may be that a letter was mailed to you and you did not receive it. If that’s the case, you can call the agency’s Client Service Bureau at (888) 203-8100 to request a duplicate letter.

For further information about CIPA and what schools must do to comply, refer to the CIPA Survival Guide on the eSchool News web site (see link below).

Links:

Schools and Libraries Division
http://www.sl.universalservice.org

CIPA Survival Guide
http://www.eschoolnews.com/features/cipa