SAN FRANCISCO, CA--(Marketwired - Jan 30, 2014) - A group of 50 executives, innovators, and entrepreneurs joined the non-profit organization EducationSuperHighway today to urge the Federal Communications Commission to modernize the E-Rate program -- a move that will help advance the President's ConnectED goal to connect 99% of America's K-12 students to high-speed broadband in five years. The group includes CEOs from American Express, Adobe, Airbnb, Bloomberg L.P., Dell, Dropbox, eBay, EMC Corporation, Facebook, Foursquare, Google, HP, Intuit, Microsoft, Netflix, Salesforce.com, Tory Burch, Xerox, and Yahoo and represents approximately $785 billion in annual economic activity and two million workers.
In a joint letter to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), the executives highlight the critical need to prepare America's students for the knowledge economy, contending that robust Internet access in schools is the foundation necessary to equip the nation's youth to compete in tomorrow's workforce.
The CEOs recommend that the FCC take swift action to modernize the E-Rate program by focusing on high-speed broadband, using capital investments to dramatically lower the cost of bandwidth for schools, and increasing transparency and accountability.
"This group of leading CEOs, innovators, and investors understands well the importance of making wise investments today to help us prosper tomorrow, and they are boldly calling on the FCC to ensure that the federal E-Rate program does just that," said Evan Marwell, CEO of EducationSuperHighway. "Our nation's businesses have been radically transformed by technology and our schools must keep pace to prepare our youth for the knowledge economy."
Secretary of Education, Arne Duncan applauded the recent support from America's CEOs: "Providing our schools and students access to high-speed broadband is vital to their future and that makes it everybody's business. I appreciate the work and thought of these leaders in helping to move forward the President's ConnectED vision to provide modern tools to nearly all of our students and teachers in the next five years. By doing that, they are helping our students be prepared to compete for jobs in the 21st century global economy."
EducationSuperHighway is a non-profit organization with the mission of ensuring that every K-12 public school has reliable, high-capacity Internet access so they can take advantage of the promise of digital learning. Backed by Mark Zuckerberg's Startup:Education and the Gates Foundation, the team of educators, business executives, and engineers is led by successful entrepreneur Evan Marwell.