Clarendon Foundation, Inc. is a tax exempt nonprofit corporation that was organized in March, 1991.
We are committed to improving communities through providing communication technology
and educational programs to schools, communities, and government.
Educational Broadband Service 2005 – Present
The FCC promoted the wireless cable industry as a third pipeline for subscription television service, to compete with cable TV and satellite TV, but it failed because of a lack of channel capacity. In response, the FCC amended its regulations over a period of about a decade to reflect changes in technology, including the introduction of the Internet, and developments in the telecommunications industry.
In 2004, the Commission authorized use of the educational broadcast spectrum for two-way digital use and low-power service, which is used to minimize harmful electronic interference in cellular networks. It also revised its band plan for the 2.5 Gigahertz to provide for contiguous spectrum in the channel assignments, which is required to deploy advanced wireless services. The FCC changed the name for the educational broadcast service from Instructional Television Fixed Service (ITFS) to Educational Broadband Service (EBS).
In adopting its “new, more flexible rules,” the FCC intended to “facilitate the growth of new and innovative wireless technologies and services, including wireless broadband services that have the potential to compete with cable and DSL broadband providers and to extend broadband service to rural and underserved areas.”
This government initiative led to the acquisition of wireless cable operators by the major telecommunications companies, such as Sprint-Nextel, MCI WorldCom, and Clearwire Corporation. The spectrum is now being used to deploy a broadband wireless Internet access network using 4th Generation mobile LTE technology.
Clarendon Foundation currently holds FCC licenses for Educational Broadband Service channel groups in 21 U.S. markets. In addition, the FCC has granted a Nonexclusive Nationwide (NN) license in the 3.65 – 3.7 Gigahertz band to Clarendon Foundation. This spectrum can also be used to operate WiMAX service. The 3.5 GHz band was adopted by the FCC to encourage the deployment of broadband wireless access in rural and underserved areas.
Instructional Television Fixed Service 1991 – 2004
In late 1991, Clarendon Foundation began to submit applications for broadcast licenses reserved by the Federal Communications Commission for educational institutions and nonprofit organizations. ITFS became a new focus for the Foundation, which has had a successful track record in acquiring ITFS licenses. This new nonprofit activity was carried out for the purpose of providing free instructional television programming to accredited educational institutions.
Clarendon Foundation leased the “excess” airtime on its channels, which was not used in providing free instructional programming to accredited educational institutions, to wireless cable operators. Under the terms of the spectrum lease contract, the wireless operator agrees to:
- Carry Clarendon Foundation’s instructional programming on its subscription television service.
- Provide free reception equipment and service to Clarendon Foundation’s “receive site” schools and colleges.
To date, Clarendon Foundation has helped more than 70 educational institutions in the legal and technical aspects of preparing applications for educational broadcast spectrum. In 1996, the Foundation worked with the North Carolina Community College System to develop a statewide network, and helped over 40 community colleges submit license applications. Most of the applications were granted.
The History Channel 1991 – 1993
In order to operate its instructional television service, Clarendon Foundation, which was located in the Washington, D.C. area, obtained programming that featured American history and government that was transmitted to its receive site schools and colleges. The free service was branded by Clarendon as The History Channel, and it was an original idea of Clarendon Foundation’s President, Kemp Harshman.
The History Channel was registered as a federal service mark in 1992. The service mark was later assigned to the Arts and Entertainment Networks, and Clarendon rebranded its instructional television services as TV America. Under TV America, Clarendon Foundation has produced or provided funding for documentaries and special event videos for three Presidential Libraries.