Preparing and Submitting your Technology Plan
(Updated January 4, 2010)
E-rate applicants applying in the Internal Connections category must certify that their requests are based on approved technology plans that include provisions for integrating telecommunication services and Internet access into their library services. Full information about technology plans is available on the Universal Service website, specifically, on their "Developing the Technology Plan" page. Here we offer a basic guide to preparing and submitting your technology plan for approval.
Important Tips about the Tech Plan:
- You must have created/drafted/prepared your Tech Plan BEFORE submitting your Form 470.
- You must submit your plan for approval to TSLAC and have it approved before filing your Form 486 or before July 1 of the Funding Year you are applying, whichever comes first. (Allow 2 weeks for approval.)
- Tech Plans can only be certified for 3 years at a time. Coverage dates should run from July 1 to June 30.
To create and file your technology plan, please follow these three steps.
1. Fill out the form (revised 11/30/07), which is available here for download in three formats:
- RTF File (can be imported into most word processing programs)
- MS Word file
- HTML page (can be edited and printed using any HTML editor)
Please note that to be approved, your plan must include a sufficient level of information to justify and validate the purpose of a Universal Service Program request. Enough information for a three-year period should be provided. To qualify for the E-rate, your plan must meet the five criteria established by the SLD:
- The plan must establish clear goals and a realistic strategy for using telecommunications and information technology to improve library services
- The plan must have a professional development strategy to ensure that staff know how to use these new technologies to improve library services
- The plan must include an assessment of the telecommunication services, hardware, software, and other services that will be needed to improve education or library services
- The plan must include an evaluation process that enables the school or library to monitor progress toward the specified goals and make mid-course corrections in response to new developments and opportunities as they arise.
Since late 1999, the SLD has audited a number of library E-rate applications. SLD identified several weaknesses in fulfilling criteria 1, 2, and 4. Please pay special attention to the related sections in your plan.
2. Submitting Your Plan For Review:
- A contact name and an e-mail address and/or telephone number where we can reach you if we need additional information to evaluate or certify your plan
- A starting and ending date for your plan (day, month, and year). Note: we recommend that your plan cover no more than 3 years. If you choose to write your plan for a longer time frame, please be aware that it can only be certified for 3 years. You will need to revise and resubmit an updated plan prior to expiration.
- Submit your plan for a quick review by email to: email@example.com. He will provide feedback to complete your final draft. (Allow 2 weeks for review)
- After we review your technology plan, we will contact you if any additional information is needed.
3. Submit Final Plan for Approval:
- Once your plan has been reviewed and meets the requirements for approval, mail a print copy of your technology plan with with all original signatures (no copies needed) to the indicated contact person and address below. Sorry, no faxes or electronic submissions are possible!
Library Development Division
Texas State Library and Archives
1201 Brazos Street
PO Box 12927
Austin, TX 78711
Once the plan is approved, you should receive a certificate in about 2 to 3 weeks. We will also regularly update a webpage listing the Technology Plan Status for all applications we have received. If you have any questions, please contact Henry Stokes, 512-463-6624 or via e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.