FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
President Obama’s ConnectEd Initiative Gains Traction
Kansas City, MO (March 10, 2014) – President Obama recently announced major progress on ConnectEd, an initiative aimed at connecting 99 percent of students to the Internet. The President’s promise to provide broadband service to 20 million students will now take place over the next two years, much more quickly than originally anticipated when ConnectEd was launched last summer.
To support the expedited timeline, the Federal Communications Commission announced it will double the amount of money it devotes to expanding high-speed Internet connectivity in schools and libraries to $2 billion. Additionally, private-sector companies have committed more than $750 million in funds to support the initiative.
“It’s quite safe to say that millions and millions of young people will be affected,” said Gene Sperling, Director of the National Economic Council for Obama. “Everything announced here is going to have a stronger impact because of its cumulative effect.”
“For the past 16 years, Unite Private Networks (UPN) has been providing high bandwidth services to school districts and other customers across 20 states,” said Kevin Anderson, UPN Chief Executive Officer. “We currently serve nearly 2,000 school facilities with bandwidth speeds ranging from 1 to 10 Gbps. Districts served by UPN include schools of all sizes, shapes, and locations. They are located in urban areas, suburban areas, and rural areas. Some districts we serve have as many as 280 sites, while others have just 1 site. We applaud President Obama’s efforts to increase E-rate funding to allow all schools to receive affordable broadband connectivity.”