Author - John Cradler

Expanded Support to Sustain Net Neutrality 

net neutrality

With the FCC plan to eliminate net neutrality heading toward becoming a formal regulation, opponents are now moving on two fronts.  First, 21 states and the District of Columbia filed suit in federal court to block the FCC’s turnabout. In the Senate, Democrats claim to be near the 51-vote tipping point to block the plan. Second, the Internet Association, which represents such as Netflix, Google, Apple, and Facebook, stepped in for the first time to oppose the switch away from net neutrality.

Xavier Becerra, California’s Attorney General joined the nationwide lawsuit, and issued this statement:

The online world should be preserved against imposed fees and limitations. Internet access is a utility — just like water and electricity.  Net neutrality is a guideline that protects all Internet users.

It should be mentioned that we had intended for CUE sponsored, Assembly Joint Resolution No.7 to support making the Internet a public utility as was done in 1934 for telephone service under the Rural Electrification Act. 

CUE Responds to Net Neutrality: The FCC votes to repeal Net Neutrality but. . .   

leg advocacy

In flagrant disregard to the will of the people, the Federal Communications Commission voted 3-2 to end net neutrality.

Net neutrality is a key component to a free and open Internet. Net neutrality prevents Internet service providers like Comcast and AT&T from censoring access to content they don’t like, giving higher speeds to content providers who pay more, and charging different rates to consumers to access different types of sites.

FCC Logo

CUE is a strong supporter of net neutrality and worked with California Assembly Member Kevin Mullin to introduce Assembly Joint Resolution (AJR) No. 7 which passed both houses of the State Legislature. The Resolution requested Congress and the President of the U.S. to retain the net neutrality rules. In spite of this support by the CA Legislature, along with the majority of the U.S. population, the FCC voted to end net neutrality.

Opposition statement by FCC Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel who submitted one of the two no-votes:

“I dissent from this rash decision to roll back net neutrality rules and the corrupt process that has brought us to this point. And I dissent from the contempt this agency has shown our citizens in pursuing this path today. This decision puts the Federal Communications Commission on the wrong side of history, the wrong side of the law, and the wrong side of the American public.”

Jessica Rosenworcel, received the CUE Legislative Advocacy Award last year and supported the AJR 7 in its development and will advise on next actions to take in the ongoing fight to repeal the FCC recommendation.

The national fight to protect a free and open Internet is far from over. The FCC decision will be challenged in the courts and by many members of Congress. CUE Legislative Consultants will closely monitor and suggest future actions CUE could initiate on it’s own, and/or with associations, to over-ride the FCC decision.

To Take Action: If you are not pleased about the repeal of net neutrality, you should contact your representative or senator at Contacting Congress and give them your thoughts. With significant public support it is possible that Congress could pass legislation to restore some or all of the previous net neutrality regulations.

Change.org's Petition on Net NeutralityChange.org has nearly 2.2 million signatures on a petition to Congress. CUE members can help them.

Signing Change.org’s petition is a great first step in making your voice heard, but your representatives in Congress, who oversee the FCC, need to hear from you by phone too. 

It’s easy to do, only takes a minute, and is very effective. Click here to quickly and easily have your phone connected to your representative’s office.

Looking for an even quicker way to help? Send a tweet to the FCC with one click

After the new rules are in place, it will be important to monitor your Internet service provider and file complaints when you see content being prioritized or throttled. Complaints about the FCC action should be filed with the Federal Trade Commission or the Department of Justice.

Stay informed by going to cue.org and checking the CUE Legislative Updates link.

Further Reading:

Scott Weiner's Net Neutrality Response for California

Scott Weiner’s Net Neutrality Response for California

California’s Legislative response to Net Neutrality


More details about the Net Neutrality voting

More details about the Net Neutrality voting

CUE Supported Legislation Approved by Gov Brown

ca-logoCUE Advocacy Update

Assembly Bill 2329, Computer Science Plan by Assemblywoman Bonilla was signed by Governor Brown September 27th, 2016. This bill was actively supported by CUE as well as most of the education associations potentially part of the Coalition mentioned in this article. The bill requires State Superintendent Torlakson to convene an advisory panel to prepare recommendations for a K-12 Computer Science Strategic Implementation (CCSSI) Plan to be adopted by the State Board of Education and implemented by the California Department of Education on or before July 1, 2018.

The CCSSI Plan would provide recommendations to address:

  1. Provision of professional development for education in computer science
  2. Teacher certification pathways in computer science
  3. Defining computer science education principles to meet needs of K-12 students
  4. Ensure all pupils have access to computer science from K-post secondary education
  5. Ensure school districts have adequate broadband connectivity and infrastructure
  6. Ensure school districts have hardware and software
  7. Increase participation of underserved pupils in computer science education

The 23-member panel is to include:  Six K-12 teachers, representatives of the State Superintendent, Governor, Senate, and Assembly, the CTC, private sector technology industry, UC, CSU, Community Colleges, private colleges, county offices of education, the Instructional Quality Commission, STEM education representatives, school administrators, a public school pupil, a parent organization, and the National Computer Science Teachers Association. Click here to see the text and legislative history for AB 2329.

Funding for Computer Science: The bill states that if State or Federal funding is not available, the Panel will investigate the process and ability to accept grants and accept public and private donations to fund the convening the

CUE 2016 Student Showcase photo credit Danny Silva

2016 CUE Student-Powered Showcase
photo credit: Danny Silva, CUE

Panel and preparing the Plan. The bill supports President Obama’s Computer Science for All initiative, which provides Federal funding for the next three years for states to increase access to computer science education in elementary and secondary education classrooms. Under the program, states would submit comprehensive five-year “Computer Science for All” plans in order to be eligible for federal funding. In addition to state-level grants, the Federal budget allocates competitive grant funding for districts to execute computer science education expansion efforts to serve as models for national replication.

Computer Science Standards Defined: The Computer Science Teachers Association (CSTA) is a professional association that supports and encourages education in the field of computer science and related areas. CSTA has developed Computer Science Standards which provide the foundation for a complete computer science curriculum and its implementation at the K–12 level which are found at: http://csta.acm.org/Curriculum/sub/K12Standards.html  The CSTA Standards are intended to:

  1. Introduce the fundamental concepts of computer science to all students, beginning at the elementary school level.
  2. Present computer science at the secondary school level in a way that can fulfill a computer science, math, or science graduation credit.
  3. Encourage schools to offer additional secondary-level computer science courses that will allow interested students to study facets of computer science in more depth and prepare them for entry into the work force or college.
  4. Increase the availability of rigorous computer science for all students, especially those who are members of underrepresented groups.

The Panel will be able to refer to the CSTA Computer Science Standards because CSTA will have a representative on the Panel. Given the work already done in this area by CSTA and others, it seems that the panel would not have difficulty completing its work well before the July 1, 2018 deadline as stated in SB 2329. CUE actively supported AB 2329 and submitted support letters urging the Governor to sign it. It is suggested that the next steps would be to work with the CDE and Assemblywoman Bonilla to enable CUE to have a representative on the advisory panel as described in the bill.

If you are an active CUE member and would like to participate in CUE’s efforts to support implementation of this bill, please contact John at the email below.

cradlerJohn Cradler is a legislative policy consultant with CUE and works with the CUE board, staff, and Legislative Advocacy Committee to advise on policy, legislation, and other public initiatives to support CUE’s mission and vision. He can be reached at jcradler@cue.org and cradler@earthlink.net