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Board of Education


Burke County Public Schools
BEN: 127065

Student Safe Email with Communication Tools,
such as Homework Dropboxes and Blogs

470 Application # 529470001104388
Request for Proposal, RFP-BCPS03
Burke County Public Schools (“The District”) is requesting proposals from service providers to provide dependable Student Safe Email with Communication Tools, such as Homework Dropboxes and Blogs for our district.  The purpose of this service will be to provide educational services in a safe, secure environment at the best price, and service features that will facilitate teacher, student, and parent communication. Our intent is to enter into a multiyear contract up to 3 years, beginning July 1, 2013.

Quantity: Approximately 10,100 students in Grades 3-12.
Proposal Due Date:  Tuesday, February 19, 2013 no later than 12:00 PM EST. All proposals must be in a sealed envelope. Any proposals received later than the specified date and time will not be considered. In the case of duplicate proposals being received from your company, the decision of the district will be final.

Request for Information:
All requests must be submitted in writing to Angie Blalock at least 5 business days prior to bid opening. Email any questions to If a response is issued, both the question and answer will be posted on the district’s web site at: or

Submit proposals (2 copies) via mail or delivered to:

Angie Blalock
Chief Technology Officer
Burke County Public Schools
700 East Parker Road; P.O. Drawer 989
Morganton, NC 28680-000
ATTN: Student Safe Email Proposal, RFP-BCPS03
(If hand delivering, please keep in mind that our school district facilities are closed on weekends and holidays.)

Terms of Contract:
Our intent is to enter into a multiyear contract up to 3 years, beginning July 1, 2013. The contract may be canceled at any time by the district with a 30-day written notice of cancellation. 

All awards are contingent upon Burke County Public Schools receiving Erate funding to supplement local funding for support of the project. The project may not begin until Burke County Public Schools is in receipt of a Funding Commitment Decision Letter (FCDL) from the SLD which gives notification that P1 funding has been granted.

Vendor shall have, at a minimum, a working knowledge of the federal Universal Service Support Mechanism for Schools and Libraries (commonly known as "Erate"). Vendor shall agree to participate in the Erate Program and to cooperate fully and in all respects with the Universal Service Administrative Company ("USAC") and any agency or organization administering the Erate Program to ensure that our school district receives all of the Erate funding for which it has applied and to which it is entitled in connection with Vendor services and/or products.

Each vendor is required to submit a standard Service-Level Agreement which states response times and provisions for reimbursements for unavailability of service, unavailability of contracted service speeds, unplanned outages and ability to terminate the agreement due to chronic problems.

Vendor shall provide Burke County Public Schools with Item 21 attachments itemizing all eligible and ineligible services in a format compatible with SLD requirements.

Vendor agrees to retain all relevant Erate documentation and, upon request, provide it to Burke County Public Schools for a period of five years after the last date to receive services.

Should Erate funding be denied or rescinded due to action or inaction of the Vendor, the Vendor shall continue service at the authorized Erate discount rate.

The Burke County Public School district reserves the right to accept or reject any or all of the proposals submitted, and to waive informalities and accept that proposal which appears to be in the school system's best interest.

As a public school system, we are subject to state bidding procedures and local purchasing procedures established by the Burke County Board of Education.

For additional information, visit

or contact Crystal Smith-Cooper, Director of Purchasing, 828-439-4317.

Requirements to be included in the Proposal:
  • Clearly distinguish between Erate eligible and ineligible costs, any optional or other costs, estimated monthly fees and taxes, and grand totals to be considered in evaluation criteria.
  • Describe how the price is adjusted if student count goes up or down during the year.
  • Describe any training included in the proposal and additional options for training.
  • Give cost(s) for training.
  • Describe computer platform and browser compatibilities.
  • Describe the features of: web interface for students and teachers/administrators, searching capabilities, language translation, support for student safety, custom domains, chat rooms, etc., as well as the features that relate to restrictions that can be placed on the accounts.
  • Explain the account storage space per user.
  • Describe the proposed technical support system. Include average response time to customer inquiries via phone and email.
  • Failure to submit this information may disqualify the vendor's proposal.
  • Describe any other features included included in the plan that are erate eligible or ineligible.
Vendor Information:
Company Name:
Erate SPIN Number:
Quote Number:
Years of Experience:
Tax Identification Number:
Contact Information:

Email Address:
Vendors may be contacted with questions.

Bid evaluation considerations will include the following:
Cost of Eligible Services listed
Cost of Ineligible Products listed
LEA Experience with Vendor
References from other school districts
Years of Experience
Technical Support
Minority Business Status
In State Preference
Project Management Expertises
CIPA (Children Internet Protection Act) Compliant
Tax Identification Number provided
Service Provider Identification Number (SPIN)

Please note  
A SAMPLE chart of how to submit your company's proposal is attached here:  SAMPLE CHART

The Q&A section below contains answers related to the following Form 470s:

Safe, Student Email
Form Identifier: Email2013.
Form 470 Application Number: 529470001104388

Internal Connections and Basic Maintenance
(1) Form 470 Application Number: 232850001101361
Form Identifier: IC2013. 

(2) Form 470 Application Number: 192670001101381
Form Identifier: IC WCRC 2013. 

We will be updating the Q&A section as questions come in to us about the three form 470's we currently have out for bids.


 Questions and Answers

Use SHIFT+ENTER to open the menu (new window).
Other Info

I saw your Form 470 for E-Rate.  Since you are not issuing an RFP, can you give me an idea of what manufacturer for switches you are considering, and any other information that you have available.

We do not have a manufacturer in mind, and will be considering all submitted bids.  We will be selecting the most cost-effective bid. 

Both 192670001101381 and 232850001101361Both IC WCRC 2013 and IC2013

​We are interested in responding to your posted 470 for Internal Connections and Basic Maintenance.  Will you please provide any information available regarding requirement and/or specifications.

470 - 232850001101361

WAN/LAN Switch Infrastructure Upgrade:  27 locations, 1 per location, 48 Port Switches 1 GB/POE/4 SFPS with 1 GB Uplink.

WAN/LAN Switch Infrastructure Upgrade:  27 locations, 1 per location, 1 GB Single Mode 850 nm SPF Transceiver.

Basic Maintenance of all eligible equipment in all eligible locations - 27 locations.

470 - 192670001101381

WAN/LAN Switch Infrastructure Upgrade:  8 - 48 Port Switches 1 GB/POE/4 SFPs with 10 GB Uplinks.

WAN/LAN Switch Infrastructure Upgrade:  1 - 10 GB Single Mode 1310nm SFP Transceivers.

WAN/LAN Switch Infrastructure Upgrade:  9 - 10 GB Multi Mode SFP Transceivers.

Basic Maintenance of all eligible equipment in eligible location - 1 location.

192670001101381, 232850001101361IC2013,  IC WCRC 2013

​You have two 470's both due on 2/14/2013 for WAN/LAN Switch Infrastructure Upgrades.  Can you provide additional information as to part numbers to insure I am quoting what you would like to have?



Please see previous answer above. 

192670001101381, 232850001101361IC WCRC 2013, IC2013

(1)  Will you be accepting proposals for equipment only (ie. without installation or site survey), or are there mandatory services that you require?

(2)  Will you be accepting proposals beyond the Allowable Contract Date indicated on the Form 470?  If so, what is the bid deadline?

(3)  If you know, what is your approximate E-Rate discount percentage?

1:  Please see previous answer above.

2:  The Proposal Due Date is Tuesday, February 19, 2013, no later than 12:00 p.m. EST.

3:  We do not know that answer.

192670001101381, 232850001101361IC WCRC 2013, IC2013

​I wanted to confirm the address to which we should ship our proposal response as UPS will not deliver to a PO Box.  Should we ship our proposal to the 700 East Parker Road, Morganton, NC 28680?




The street address is Burke County Public Schools, 700 East Parker Road, Morganton, NC 28655. 

The PO Drawer is Burke County Public Schools, PO Drawer 989, Morganton, NC 28680.

All Erate ProposalsAll Erate Form Identifiers

I was attempting to view the Sample Chart of how to submit our eRate Proposal for Student Safe Email with Communication Tools, such as Homework Dropboxes and Blogs.  However, when I click on the hyperlink it asks me for a User Name and Password.

When you click on a document, if you are prompted for a username/password, click CANCEL.  You should be able to access it without a username and password.

All Erate ProposalsAll Erate Form Identifiers

Are you also considering web hosting options as far as a communication tool with homework drop boxes, web lockers, online tests, etc...?


We will consider them as long as they meet the requirements of the RFP.


​The Form 470 indicates the project is an "upgrade".  What WAN/LAN equipment does the district currently use?

A mix of Cisco switches.

192670001101381, 232850001101361IC2013, IC WCRC 2013