The Telecommunications Act of 1996 established the E-Rate program to provide eligible schools and libraries with discounts on telecommunication and Internet access equipment. The E-Rate program is administered by the School & Library Division of the Universal Services Administrative company (USAC)
E-Rate regulations require that discounted services only be provided to eligible schools and libraries. Schools and libraries (entities) may also have eligible “annexes,” or facilities associated with the entity that have a different physical address.
As a part of its E-rate application review process, USAC must validate the eligibility of entities and any annexes receiving services. USAC usually has sufficient information to confirm the eligibility of most entities and annexes. Not infrequently, however, USAC will reach out to the applicant to validate the eligibility of one or more entities and/or annexes. In doing so, USAC will often require “third-party” validation from the school’s State Education Department. In New York, USAC requires third-party validation from NYSED.
Effective immediately, NYSED will validate entities and annexes only if the entity or annex is properly listed in SEDREF
(NYSED’s electronic school database system). It is the responsibility of each New York State applicant to make sure that the SEDREF
data of all its eligible entities and annexes is correct and up-to-date. To simplify the E-rate validation process, applicants are encouraged to ensure that each entity’s name is the same in both NYSED’s SEDREF and USAC’s EPC
All New York State public schools with multiple sites (physical locations) must register each physical location as a separate entity in SEDREF and receive a BEDS code for each site (location).
Religious and independent schools with multiple sites must apply for BEDS codes for each site in order for each site to receive funding. Religious and independent schools were notified of this change in September 2017 in the SORIS Code Memo
. Schools can reference the SORIS Code FAQ
for additional information. Applicable schools should submit BEDS applications
to the State Office of Religious and Independent Schools. Questions may be directed to SORIS@nysed.gov
NOTE: Schools whose BEDS applications are approved on or after January 1, 2018 will not be issued a BEDS code until July 1, 2018. NYSED will maintain a list of approved applications that are awaiting BEDS codes. NYSED will validate schools with approved applications that have not yet received a BEDS code(s).
Charter schools must list additional sites in SEDREF in order for those sites to be validated for E-rate purposes. To list an additional site in SEDREF, charter schools should email firstname.lastname@example.org
, and provide the main charter school’s name and BEDS code and the additional site’s name, physical address, on-site contact name, phone number and e-mail address.
If a library or a library system needs assistance in updating their record in SEDREF, they should email Barbara.Massago@nysed.gov
For any other questions about SEDREF registration, please email email@example.com
. For questions about E-rate validation, please contact the Office of Educational Design and Technology at (518) 474-5461 or EdTech@nysed.gov