Magazine article University Business

I Want My ITFS: FCC Ruling Preserves Educational Broadcast Spectrum

Magazine article University Business

I Want My ITFS: FCC Ruling Preserves Educational Broadcast Spectrum

Article excerpt

The Federal Communications Commission (www.fcc.gov) voted unanimously in June to reject a proposal that would have carved up the ITFS (Instructional Television Fixed Service) broadcast spectrum currently used by K-12 and higher education as well as distance learning programs.

ITFS is the only portion of the spectrum licensed exclusively for format educational purposes. More than 330 colleges and universities hold licenses for 752 ITFS stations. ITFS is often used to transmit a broad range of services, such as in-service training for teachers and classroom instruction for students. The proposal would have leased part of the spectrum to commercial entities and reduced the size of each ITFS channel.

Although the FCC killed the proposal, it stiff asked that institutions give up a portion of the spectrum. Some universities lease unused spectrum to communications companies and would have been prevented from continuing to do so had the proposal been passed.

A number of national education organizations and broadcast corporations grouped to oppose the plan, including the American Association of Community Colleges (www.aacc.nche.edu), the American Association of State Corteges and Universities (www. …

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