As more and more schools obtain high-speed internet connectivity, services emerge to ensure they have the tools to maintain those connections, like this fiber optic internet cable.

A new tool will help track internet equity

As more and more schools obtain high-speed internet connectivity, services emerge to ensure they have the tools to maintain those connections

A new free tool launching later this year will provide critical information on K-12 internet pricing and availability across the nation.

The tool, called Connect K-12, will provide actionable internet speed and pricing information on K-12 broadband connectivity across America using publicly available data from the federal E-rate program. It will equip state and school district leaders with the information necessary to continue to drive school network upgrades toward the 1 Mbps per student goal.

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The tool also will report national and state connectivity trends to ensure that the E-rate program continues to effectively support school broadband access.

Connect K-12 comes from Connected Nation, which has been selected by EducationSuperHighway to carry forward its mission to ensure state and school district leaders have the information they need to improve school broadband (high-speed internet) connectivity.

“Our core belief is that ‘Everyone Belongs in a Connected Nation.’ To us, that means that no one—and particularly no student—should ever be without the opportunities and resources that having access to broadband can provide,” said Tom Ferree, Chairman & CEO, Connected Nation.

“For years, we’ve worked to help schools bring instructional technology and better connectivity to the classroom, but Connect K-12 will enable us to provide key data and insights that will help state and local leaders take informed action to improve school connectivity in districts across the country. All of us at Connected Nation are honored and excited to work with EducationSuperHighway in launching this tool and building upon their impressive legacy as they prepare to sunset later this year.”

Founded in 2012, EducationSuperHighway reached its goal of connecting 99 percent of schools to internet connections that provide at least 100 Kbps of bandwidth for every student by 2020. In accomplishing that mission, EducationSuperHighway now hands off the next stage of this work to Connected Nation.

“Strong leadership, actionable data, and partnerships at the state and national level have been critical to increasing school broadband access.” said Evan Marwell, Founder and CEO, EducationSuperHighway. “We are thrilled to partner with Connected Nation. As a leader in the broadband and public-sector space, we feel confident that they will continue to work in partnership with state leaders and schools in an effort to ensure every child has access to the opportunities digital learning can provide.”

“We are honored to carry on EducationSuperHighway’s mission to enhance school connectivity across America, with Connect K-12 as the foundation of our work,” said Brent Legg, Vice President of Government Affairs at Connected Nation. “Improving access remains a challenge for many school districts, particularly in rural areas, as they seek to keep pace with growing technology demands. We are thrilled to have the opportunity to launch and maintain this new tool for the benefit of state and school district leaders everywhere.”

Funds For Learning, a professional firm specializing in the federal E-rate program, has been selected as the technology partner to manage the data readiness and software elements of the tool.

Material from a press release was used in this report.

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