California Educational Data Processing Association
DataBus - Vol. 38, No. 2
February-March, 1998
Making E-Rate Easier To Digest

Assist: Vendor assists application process by providing bid specification template.

Dan Shahbazi, Internet Products, Inc.

E-Rate anticipation is peaking within the educational community. The SLC Web site is about set and ready for the barrage of applications. For many, this marks the end of a long waiting period and the beginning of a journey that will help stretch the educational dollar further. Now is when awareness heightens to make sure that all forms are submitted with the appropriate information.

Ken Prosser, Director of Information Technology Services at Ventura COE, is riding the E-Rate wave with much coordination and is looking toward what E-Rate funds will bring to Ventura county. "Anytime you can stretch the educational dollar, the students win," he said. "State funding can only go so far, and anytime there's a potential for getting outside dollars you have to pursue it."

Ventura COE is awaiting the activation of the E-Rate Web site and is ready to submit its Form 470 application, which calls for the acquisition of a second Internet server for the county. "We were going to a buy a new Internet server, and I had the dollars set aside," he noted. "E-Rate may allow me to buy the same equipment at half the price so I can stretch the dollars even further."

He indicated that the process of filing the application is quite simple once there is an understanding of the information that must be included. Internet Products, Inc., developer and manufacturer of the InterGate Internet server, makes available a bid specification for use with Form 470 that specifies an integrated hardware and software Internet server solution that specifically meets the needs of education. "The goal of this bid specification is to help minimize the time involved in specifying an Internet server for E-Rate funding," said Eileen Donovan, Internet Products' E-Rate coordinator.

Ventura COE has adopted Internet Products' bid specification and modified it to fit its specific needs. Prosser indicated that the application is relatively straight forward once you add "Internet server" to line "D" of section 13, which is for internal connections on page 2 of Form 470. In section 15, a more refined definition of the server can be included along with a reference to an attached RFP.

"Internet servers are more associated with internal connections than with Internet access as far as the application is concerned," he added in reference to using section 13 rather than section 14. Accompanying Ventura's application will be an RFP that is based upon Internet Products' bid specification that is based upon Internet Products' bid specification that points to a hardware configuration as well as integrated software of the caliber of InterGate.

Prosser said that his hope is to use E-Rate funding to add a second InterGate Internet server from Internet Products. "We're happy InterGate users so I'm really not interested in using anything else. Instead of getting another Web server that would require more learning and much attention, we're hoping to get another InterGate and just plug it in.

Ventura's Internet server RFP can be found on its Web site at [http://www.vcss.k12.ca.us/erate/webserverrfp.htm]. Internet Products' bid specification can be downloaded off its Web site in ASCII, HTML or MSWord formats at [http://www.InternetProducts.com/e-rate/bidspec]. You may also view an example of Form 470 specifying an Internet server at [http://www.InternetProducts.com/e-rate]. For further information about using E-Rate funds for Internet servers contact Eileen Donovan toll-free at 888-InterGate (468-3742) or send her an e-mail at

Dan Shahbazi is Public Relations Manager for Internet Products, Inc., and may be reached by telephone at (619) 576-4100 x 109 or by FAX at (619) 576-4111. His e-mail address is [email protected]

Return to Index Return to February-March index