The deadline for compliance with the Children’s Internet Policy Act (CIPA) is rapidly approaching. By July 1, 2012, applicants who receive E-Rate funds for Internet Access, Internal Connections, and Basic Maintenance must update their existing CIPA policy to include a provision “…for the education of minors about appropriate online behavior, including interacting with other individuals on social networking websites and in chat rooms and cyberbullying awareness and response.” Delays in compliance may result in the loss of E-Rate funds, so the time to act is now.
The FCC has made clear that it is unlikely to tolerate any delays, having stated “[a]lthough we encourage schools to update their Internet safety policies as soon as practicable, making this requirement effective for the 2012 funding year, which begins July 1, 2012, will give schools adequate time to amend their Internet safety policies and to implement procedures to comply with the new requirements after completion of this rulemaking proceeding.”
In order to demonstrate compliance, E-Rate applicants must amend their existing CIPA policy to incorporate the new language. The FCC is not requiring an additional public hearing unless (1) local policy requires one to amend the existing CIPA policy, or (2) an applicant is unable to show that it held a public hearing when its original CIPA policy was adopted. Applicants are also reminded that they are required to maintain all documentation related to CIPA compliance for a minimum of 5 years from the last date of service associated with a particular funding request.
For more information about CIPA compliance, please contact us by clicking the “Visit Troy Law Group” link above.