Today, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack hosted a media conference call to discuss Obama administration efforts to bring broadband service and economic opportunity to schools and communities in rural America.
Secretary Vilsack's call followed President Obama's announcement of a new initiative called ConnectED to connect 99 percent of America's students to the internet through high-speed broadband and high-speed wireless within 5 years, calling on the FCC to modernize and leverage its existing E-Rate program to meet that goal.
The President also directed the federal government to make better use of existing funds to get Internet connectivity and educational technology into classrooms, and into the hands of teachers trained on its advantages.
And he called on businesses, states, districts, schools and communities to support this vision. This ambitious initiative does not require Congressional action.