E-Rate Help & Resource Center
E-Rate Exchange offers several online tools to get you started today! Please see the links below to view your options.
A great resource of web-editable E-Rate Forms (all files are .PDF format)
Feel free to use our tool to look up E-Rate funding information about any
school or library based on its Billed Entity Number
Frequently Asked Questions:
Who is eligible for E-Rate funding?
Any School or Library that conducts educational services in a classroom setting for students ranging from 3 years old to 12th grade is eligible to file for E-Rate discounts.
FY 2017 Eligible Services List
Questions about the Modernization Order?
Watch our short video below regarding the recent changes to the E-Rate program.
What is the E-Rate Modernization:
In 2014, USAC and the FCC released an order to modernize Erate, which “re-focuses the program on providing the necessary support to ensure our nation’s schools and libraries have affordable access to high-speed broadband” –FCC The goal of the Modernization Order, which takes full-effect as of Funding Year 2015 (July 1, 2015-June 30, 2016), is to close the “Wi-Fi Gap” and to bring faster, more efficient broadband into schools and libraries nationwide. In an effort to close the “Wi-Fi Gap,” as of FY2015 webhosting, email hosting and cellular data are no longer eligible, and telecom voice services are being phased out of the program. The ineligibles and phase out were implemented with the intention to fund Category 2 (Internal Connections/Maintenance) funding for all applicant discount levels.
When will my voice services no longer be covered?
Voice services will be phased down by 20% each funding year, beginning in Funding Year 2015. If you have a 40% E-Rate discount, then your discount for voice services will be 20% for FY 2015, and no longer covered in FY 2016.
How do I take advantage of Category One funding?
With the voice services being phased out, now is the time to increase your wireless/broadband bandwidth. Utilizing Category Two Funding goes hand-in-hand with this.
How is my Category Two budget calculated?
Category Two budgets are calculated at a maximum amount of $150 per student, per school, or $2.30 per square foot for library applicants, over a five year period. You may use your budget at any time during those five years, whether it is all in one year, or spread out within the five years.
How can I use my E-Rate Disbursements?
How to utilize your E-Rate disbursements depends on how you choose to get your money back. There are two ways to get your E-Rate disbursements.
SPIs: SPIs (Service Provider Invoices) reduce your options as far as how your E-Rate disbursements can be utilized. SPIs are discounts on your bills. The funds you are committed are taken off your bills in that funding year by the service provider. Since the funds are applied directly to you bills as discounts there is no other way to use the funds. One option therefore is to have the money go directly to your bills as discounts.
BEARs: BEARs (Billed Entity Applicant Reimbursement) greatly increase your options for applying your E-Rate funds. However, unlike SPIs, you have to pay your bills in full before receiving the money in a form of a check. BEARs can be filed at any time after you’ve spend the money. It’s general practice to pay your bills in full for the entire funding year then apply for a big refund check once the funding year is over. Just like a tax-refund for an individual, USAC does not stipulate where the funds must be spent. With BEAR checks, a school can deposit that money then spend it on books, or new computers, or anything they need!
How do I view my funding information?
We have a helpful tutorial video to guide you through using our online Funding Look-up Tool to view your funding information.