Voqal Weighs in on the FCC’s Educational Broadband Service Rulemaking

May 10, 2018

Today Voqal issued the following statement on the Federal Communication Commission’s vote to begin the process of a new rulemaking to govern the 2.5 GHz band, a band of spectrum currently reserved for educational purposes.

“For more than 50 years, the Educational Broadband Service (EBS) spectrum has played a vital role in extending technology into the classroom and beyond. Voqal – the collaboration of five different EBS licensees who banded together to use this public asset to serve the public — welcomes the Commission’s decision to modernize EBS rules and to expand 5G services in urban areas, while also freeing up spectrum for rural broadband deployment. We are deeply concerned, however, that the FCC’s proposed rules will ultimately undermine this unique public education resource.

The FCC got it right when it recognized the value of this spectrum to benefit the public through improved access to education and Voqal is delivering on that promise. EBS is a public education resource that should not be auctioned off to the highest bidder, without regard for the impact on educators and the public. The highest and best use of this spectrum includes educational use and Voqal encourages the FCC to follow its statutory public interest mandate and preserve this important public resource. We look forward to working with the FCC to ensure EBS can continue its long legacy of benefiting educators and the public.”