HomePartner UpdatesModernizing School Transportation with E-Rate and Bus Wi-Fi

Modernizing School Transportation with E-Rate and Bus Wi-Fi

Are you in the loop about the latest E-Rate news for Bus Wi-Fi? The FCC has now greenlit E-rate funds for bus Wi-Fi, marking a significant move towards equal access for all students.

This decision is a monumental step in empowering students, especially the underserved, by ensuring they stay connected and continue learning not just in classrooms, but during their commutes, on field trips, and at extracurricular events. Imagine your students making the most of their travel time by completing assignments or preparing for the next big test – all thanks to Wi-Fi on your buses!

Why You Need to Jump Onboard

Learning happens everywhere. So why do we confine it to the four walls of a classroom for our students? With bus Wi-Fi, students can tap into a world of knowledge, anytime, anywhere. This is about breaking barriers and offering a seamless learning experience. Plus, with E-Rate funding covering up to 90% of the costs, it’s an opportunity you truly can’t afford to miss.

Getting Started: A Quick Guide

Ready to get started? Begin with a needs assessment. Determine how many buses you’ll outfit with Wi-Fi. Consider 5G technology in the 600MHz range to ensure broad coverage, which is especially vital for rural areas. Choose routers designed for transit use and partner with experienced providers that use reputable manufacturers.

Understanding E-Rate

E-Rate, a longstanding federal discount program managed by the FCC and USAC, has been the backbone of internet connectivity in schools and libraries for nearly three decades. Recently, the FCC extended these benefits to include Wi-Fi on school buses, recognizing the essential role internet access plays in modern education. With students spending significant time on buses, this initiative aims to make every minute a learning opportunity.

Eligibility and Discounts

Who’s eligible? Public and private K-12 schools, libraries, and their groups qualify for E-Rate discounts. These are calculated based on the proportion of students eligible for the National School Lunch Program and the district’s rural or urban status.

Don’t Go It Alone

Your district likely has experience with E-Rate funding already. Tap into this resource by connecting with your school’s finance team. They can guide you through the process, including understanding your district’s discount rate and navigating the necessary paperwork.

E-Rate Process Simplified

The process involves a competitive bidding system through USAC, starting with an E-Rate Form 470. After a 28-day public posting, you can select a provider and move forward with contracts and setup arrangements. Don’t forget the E-Rate Form 471 to request your discount.

Text don’t miss the deadline on brown paper notepad in businessman hands on the table with diagram. Business concept

Key Deadlines to Remember

  • Currently open: E-Rate Form 470 filing window
  • January 15: Deadline to update enrollment and NSLP data
  • January 17: E-Rate Form 471 filing window opens
  • February 28: Deadline to file E-Rate form 470
  • March 27: Deadline to file E-Rate form 471

In summary, embracing bus Wi-Fi through E-Rate funding is not just an option; it’s a strategic move to extend learning beyond the traditional setting and ensure no student is left behind in our increasingly digital world. Don’t miss this chance to revolutionize education in your district!

About Premier Wireless

Premier Wireless Business Technology Solutions, Inc. has 30 years of experience working with school districts nationwide to improve safety and communication. Premier’s portfolio includes emergency preparedness equipment for backup, failover, and emergency communication; traditional classroom technology such as Chromebooks, laptops, and whiteboards; as well as solutions for law enforcement and healthcare.

If you’re interested in learning more about Bus Wi-Fi or other technologies to modernize your school bus fleet, contact us today at sales@pwbts.net. We’re here to help!

June 2024

Read this month's magazine for a in-depth look at school bus fleet electrification. Learn more about how to plan...

Buyer’s Guide 2024

Find the latest vehicle production data and budget reports, industry trends, and contact information for state, national and federal...


Is training mechanics on high-voltage electric school buses a priority heading into the new school year?
94 votes