School Technology Consulting Practice
The Founder and Partners at CityDroneZ have a long and demonstrated commitment to PK-12 Education and its associated technology infrastructure. We know first-hand the empowerment of education to better serve all students including disadvantaged students who are able to leverage technology in school and at home.
CityDroneZ conducted an extensive Market Study of all the public, private, charter and parochial/Catholic schools in Westchester County for the E-Rate year ending June 30, 2022. Since CityDroneZ is a mapping expert, we originally focused on which of our 298 PK-12 schools had broadband fiber circuits nearby. We quickly learned there is no lack of broadband for almost all our PK-12 Schools. There are differences in broadband speeds and pricing paid by our schools. Also, almost every school needs a second fiber pipe into their school or campuses.
Westchester County agreed to support our Market Study. Our County had received over $180 million of funding under the American Rescue Plan under which Congress wanted to make sure there was “broadband equity” across the entire US, including our County.
In early 2023, we will jointly sponsor our First Annual Broadband Conference to share some of our key Findings & Recommendations. President Clinton, the “Godfather for E-Rate” has agreed to be our Keynote Speaker. This Conference was scheduled for October 25, 2022 and was postponed due to scheduling conflicts with school superintendents.
The goal of our Market Study and Conference is to provide data and best practices to encourage all the administrators for our 298 PK-12 schools to establish Westchester County as one of the best counties in the US (of 3,143 counties in total) for its PK-12 School technology infrastructure - including broadband speed and security.
In advance and after our Conference, we are meeting with school districts and schools to provide the following Scope of Service including our:
- Detailed E-Rate Reports which captures every single line item for every School District and School for all Category 1 and Category 2 Gross (i.e. before E-Rate reimbursement) Expense of $6.68 and $6.75 million, respectively (for the E-rate School year ending June 30, 2021).
- Peer Review Reports showing E-Rate expenses for similar schools in the same geography, similar student profiles and/or religious affiliation
- E-Rate Filing Consulting Services to obtain funding from the Federal Communication Commission (FCC) Universal Service Fund (USF) with the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) as the permanent Administrator using the E-Rate Productivity Center (EPC) filing protocols:
- Child Internet Protection Act (CIPA) Compliance Forms 486 & 479
- Form 470 - Form to be filed with USAC for Category 1 (Broadband) and Category 2 (Hardware & Software) and all of the detailed and precise information to be provided to potential bidders. Must be filed at least 28 days before the Filing Window closes.
- Form 471 - Request for funding after selecting the winning vendor bids
- Form 498 - BEAR payments directly by USAC to Vendors
- Form 472 - Payments directly by USAC to school
- Form 473 - Certify compliance with E-Rate rules
- Form 474 - Service Provider Invoice Form
- Program Integrity Assurance Review - help to draft this
- Letter of Agency - appointing CityDroneZ as your authorized representative
- Review of the Receipt of Notification Letter (RNL) from USAC with funding confirmation and dates to approach Vendors
- Interact with all of the Vendors to answer any questions and provide additional information
- Review of the E-Rate Reimbursement Rate using the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) or some other methodology approved by E-Rate - make sure your school is getting the maximum reimbursement under the letter and the spirit of the regulations
- Ongoing communication with USAC as required during the funding year
- Appeals for funding denials by USAC
- Record Retention for at least 10 years
- Completion of the CityDroneZ proprietary School Tech Capabilities & Cost Sheet spreadsheet to save
- Networking with Cybersecurity Experts to establish a plan to respond to Ransomware attacks
- Networking with Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) - For those schools serving disadvantaged students and their families that might want to provide diagnostic health care inside their schools.