Applying for e-rate funds? Learn more about how to create a technology plan.
What is a Technology Plan?
Some public libraries in Colorado seeking e-rate funds must prepare and submit a Technology Plan to demonstrate the library's ability to use the requested technology services to improve their programs and services.
Beginning with FY2011, technology plans are required only for Priority 2 services (Internal Connections and Basic Maintenance of Internal Connections). Applicants that seek support only for basic telephone service or Internet access do not need a technology plan.
For more information about eligible services and what is considered Priority 1 or 2 services, view the eligible services framework or the eligible service list for the current funding year available from USAC (Universal Services Administrative Company).
What is required?
All Technology Plans must:
- Be created before Form 470/RFP posting.
- Be approved by a USAC-certified technology plan approver (See Submission Process below) before Form 486 is filed or services start, whichever is sooner.
- Cover the entire funding year (July 1 to June 30) but not more than three years. E-rate funding years run from July-June each year and technology plans should cover the same time frame even if your organization runs on a different fiscal calendar.
- Contain a sufficient level of detail to validate the E-rate request.
- Meet the 4 required criteria set forth by the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) under the direction of the Federal Communications Commission (Please download and fill out the Technology Plan Checklist created to cover these criteria)
- The plan must establish clear goals and a realistic strategy for using telecommunications and information technology to improve education or library services;
- The plan must have a professional development strategy to ensure that staff know how to use these new technologies to improve education or library services;
- The plan must include an assessment of the telecommunication services, hardware, software, and other services that will be needed to improve education or library services;
- The plan must include an evaluation process that enables the school or library to monitor progress toward the specified goals and make mid-course corrections in response to new developments and opportunities and they arise.
While you are not required to submit a technology plan for approval every year, you should plan on reviewing and updating the plan annually.
For more information about Technology plans and requirements: http://www.usac.org/sl/applicants/step01/default.aspx
All Technology Plans must be submitted for approval to the Colorado State Library. Ideally, plans will be approved before submission of form 470 and they must at minimum be drafted (complete with all 4 elements) before submitting form 470.
- Download and fill out the Technology Plan Checklist
- Submit Technology Plans (by e-mail, fax, or mail) to:
Technology and Digital Initiatives Consultant
201 E Colfax
Denver CO 80203
Fax (303) 866-6940
- Keep detailed records of all submitted forms, technology plan (including the original draft), the approval letter, bidding process records etc. and make note of the dates that all items were both drafted and submitted. The FCC requires that all documents related to the School and Libraries (e-rate) program be retained for 5 years after the last date of services received.
For more information on what to retain: http://www.usac.org/sl/tools/document-retention.aspx
Need help getting started? Check out these resources
- Technology Plan Checklist
- USAC Technology Plan sitehttp://www.usac.org/sl/applicants/step01/default.aspx
- Questions to consider in Technology Planning
- Technology Planning FAQ
- E-rate application timeline
- Overview of the process
- Flow Chart of Process (PDF)
- Eligible Services Framework
- Search for a Public Library FSCS Code
- Accessing reduced school lunch data
(click on the link for Pupil Membership)
Still have questions?
Public Library Technology Plan questions should be forwarded to
All other e-rate questions should be forwarded to:
Phone: (303) 866-6850
E-Rate Assistance for Schools & Libraries (http://www.cde.state.co.us/edtech/erate2.htm)