New initiative will help school districts increase internet capacity, secure better pricing
Bowling Green, Ky. (June 22, 2020) – Connected Nation (CN) has named Emily Jordan as Vice President of its new Connect K-12 initiative, which aims to improve school connectivity nationally. Jordan will, among other things, lead the launch of a new online tool later this year that will provide free school broadband data and pricing intelligence that school districts and state leaders can use to upgrade connections to meet or exceed the FCC’s 1 megabit per second (Mbps) per student bandwidth goal.
“In recent months, because of the many coronavirus closures, we’ve all witnessed how essential technology and internet access really is to our daily lives. With that, there is an increased recognition of how critically important robust school connectivity is to our teachers and students no matter where they are,” said Tom Ferree, Chairman & CEO, CN. “As a former classroom teacher and advocate, Emily understands the importance of equipping state and school district leaders with the information and support they need to maximize federal funding, increase bandwidth, and ultimately implement engaging digital teaching and learning practices both inside and outside of the classroom.”
Connect K-12 will carry forward the legacy of nonprofit EducationSuperHighway, which is sunsetting as planned later this year. Connect K-12 will provide actionable internet speed and pricing information on K-12 broadband connectivity across America that has been gleaned from publicly available data from the federal Schools and Libraries Program of the Universal Service Fund (commonly known as “E-rate”). The tool will highlight national and state connectivity trends to ensure that the E-rate Program continues to effectively support school broadband access, and equip state and school district leaders with the information necessary to continue to drive school network upgrades toward the 1 Mbps per student goal.
Moving forward, Connected Nation will maintain the tool in collaboration with Funds For Learning (FFL), a professional firm specializing in the federal E-rate Program. FFL was selected as the technology partner to manage the data readiness and software elements of the tool.
Jordan joins the team after having previously served as Director of Operations for the bipartisan Lincoln Policy Group in Washington, D.C. Prior to that role, Jordan served as an assistant to the president of the American Farm Bureau Federation, the nation’s largest advocacy association representing the interests of rural America. There she was responsible for, among other things, the production of the organization’s 2019 centennial celebration and annual convention in New Orleans.
Jordan also has five years of classroom experience as a special education teacher, where she worked with a wide range of students with special needs. It is from that experience that she derives her passion for accessibility, organization, and sound public policy. She has a BA in Special Education from Clemson University and is a native of New York. She is an active member of the Junior League of Washington and loves to travel.
“I’m excited about joining Connected Nation as we work to tackle the need for faster, more cost-effective broadband for U.S. schools,” Jordan said. “Ensuring better broadband in schools is not just about improving technology; it’s about what that technology can do to prepare our children for a better life ahead.”
Connect K-12 will be available for free nationwide later this year.
Jessica Denson, Communications Director
About Connected Nation
Our mission is to improve lives by providing innovative solutions that expand access, adoption, and use of high-speed internet and its related technology to all people. We believe everyone belongs in a Connected Nation.
We work with consumers, community and state leaders, broadband service providers, technology companies, and foundations to develop and implement initiatives that expand the reach and impact of connected technology, with core competencies focused on achieving our mission to improve digital inclusion for people and places previously underserved or overlooked. For more information, please visit connectednation.org and follow Connected Nation on Facebook and Twitter.
About Funds For Learning
Funds For Learning® is a professional firm specializing in the federal E-rate funding program. Its mission is to provide high-quality consulting and support services for the needs of E-rate program participants, including preparing and submitting paperwork, and helping clients to understand and maintain compliance with E-rate rules and regulations. Proudly serving schools and libraries since 1997.
EducationSuperHighway was founded in 2012 with the mission of upgrading the internet access in every public school classroom in America. The organization took on this mission because it believes that digital learning has the potential to provide all students with equal access to educational opportunity and that every school requires high-speed broadband to make that opportunity a reality. EducationSuperHighway is funded by national philanthropic organizations including the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the Salesforce Foundation and supported by governors in all 50 states and America’s leading CEOs. Having completed its mission, EducationSuperHighway will sunset in August 2020.
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