By Shimmy Blum
The Yeshiva Services Division of Agudath Israel of America sponsored a live workshop and webinar to help administrators of yeshivos, Bais Yaakovs and day schools navigate the complex E-Rate telecommunications discount program.
E-Rate is a nearly two decade old federal program that subsidizes up to 90% of various telecommunications costs for public and nonpublic schools. Since the program’s inception, Agudath Israel of America has arranged annual workshops for yeshivos to familiarize them with the program’s details and process, and thus be able to enjoy its maximum benefits.
“E-Rate is a particularly complex and detail-oriented program, and there are ongoing changes,” explains Mrs. Deborah Zachai, director of education affairs for Agudath Israel of America. “It is important that we offer administrators the information and resources to keep on top of all developments.”
This year’s live workshop was held on January 12that Agudath Israel’s Brookdale Senior Citizens Center in Brooklyn. As in previous years, Mr. Winston Himsworth of E-Rate Central, the technical coordinator of the E-Rate program for the New York State Education Department, delivered the presentation. Over fifty administrators attended the two-and-a-half hour presentation.
On Tuesday, January 20th, the Yeshiva Services Division arranged for an extensive webinar on this topic that was delivered by Mr. Himsworth, in which dozens of additional administrators participated. This is the third webinar since the summer that the Yeshiva Services Division has held for nonpublic school administrators. Previous webinars focused on compliance with the Affordable Care Act and general back-to-school compliance issues, respectively. The
webinars have proven to be particularly useful to administrators both throughout New York State and across the country who were unable to personally attend workshops.
“I would like to thank Agudath Israel for giving me and other administrators access to someone as experienced and knowledgeable as Mr. Himsworth,” says Rabbi Dovid Stein, administrator in Yeshiva Karlin-Stolin. “The information we learned about the changes to E-Rate helps us immensely as we work on our future E-Rate applications and budget projections.”
The Yeshiva Services Division provides ongoing support and resources to yeshivos through dissemination of e-mail communications and a mix of workshops and webinars.