Session Number Th4-06

2016 Session
Improving K-12 Broadband Connectivity in NH Schools
Dan Runcie, State Engagement Manager, EducationSuperHighway, and Paul Toribio, EducationSuperHighway

Level: Intermediate
Grades: Technical
Learn about current NH initiatives to improve K-12 broadband connectivity and get more schools and districts affordable broadband infrastructure and upgrades. In February 2016, Governor Maggie Hassan and Commissioner of Education Virginia Barry announced a new partnership, the New Hampshire School Connectivity Initiative (NHSCI) aimed at enhancing access to high speed broadband at NHs K-12 public schools. NHSCI has partnered with EducationSuperHighway a national nonprofit organization that supports increased broadband connectivity in public schools. EducationSuperHighway is providing its services free of charge to help schools and districts in NH evaluate their options to make the best upgrade decisions. NHDoE is working to create a fiber construction matching fund to leverage the E-rate state match opportunity. 32% of NH schools currently lack fiber connectivity. For schools that need new fiber construction, E-rate will fund an additional 10% above a district's E-rate discount level if the state provides 10%. This increases a district's E-rate discount level by 20%. The dollars from this fund have the ability to leverage up to $20 of fiber construction charges from every $1 spent from the fund. This opportunity is only available for a few more years, so the more districts that will take advantage of the fiber construction opportunity, the better.