Transforming Immigrant Digital Equity (TIDE)

Get Involved in State Planning (for State & Local Offices)

The Digital Equity Act presents an unprecedented opportunity to ensure digital equity and inclusion for everyone in the U.S. This page provides guidance for state and local offices seeking to engage adult education and immigrant service providers as they get involved in their state’s Digital Equity Plan planning process.

What is a State Digital Equity Plan?

A state’s plan must include the following:

  1. The barriers to digital equity faced by covered populations in the state
  2. Measurable objectives for
    1. availability and affordability of broadband access, devices, and technical support
    2. digital literacy
    3. online accessibility of public services
    4. individual online privacy and cybersecurity
  3. An assessment of how the above objectives will impact and interact with the State’s economic, educational, health, social, and other outcomes
  4. A description of how the State will collaborate with key stakeholders to achieve the above objectives, including including community anchor institutions; nonprofit organizations; organizations that represent covered populations; civil rights organizations; workforce development program providers; State agencies administering adult education activities; public housing authorities; and/or partnerships between any of the above.
  5. A list of organizations with which the State’s administering entity collaborated on the Digital Equity Plan

Where are we now?

(Timeline from NTIA’s Digital Equity Act Programs Overview fact sheet.)

Before States finalize their State Digital Equity Plans, they are required to publish the drafts of their plans and solicit public input: States must hold a public comment period of at least thirty (30) days, consider all comments received during this public comment period, and incorporate any “worthwhile” comments. As of July 2023, multiple states have released their drafts for public comment. NTIA is compiling a list of all draft State Digital Equity Plans on this page.

Adult education should be a critical component of every State Digital Equity Plan. Our State Digital Equity Plan checklist for adult education identifies three key areas where adult education providers and adult learners should be engaged:

  1. In the development of the State Digital Equity Plan (dark grey), to ensure the inclusion of adult learner voices and adult education expertise;
  2. In the proposed implementation strategies (teal) listed in the State Digital Equity Plan, to ensure effective services for adult learners and other individuals with a language barrier; and
  3. During the public comment process (orange), to ensure awareness and accessibility of the State Digital Equity Plan and the public comment process for adult learners and their communities.

Our resource, Adult Education in Focus: An Annotated State Digital Equity Plan Template, provides further guidance on 1) why adult learners need to be included in State Digital Equity Plans, and 2) how adult education can support the development and implementation of State Digital Equity Plans, section by section.

If you’re interested in learning more about adult education and/or connecting with the adult education system in your state, contact Catalina González at

NTIA Guidance & Resources for State Digital Equity Planning

Other Guidance & Resources for State Digital Equity Planning

What’s coming?

States have one year from the date they are awarded State Digital Equity Planning Grant funding to draft and finalize their Digital Equity Plan. For the next round of funding, the State Digital Equity Capacity Grant, States will be required to not only submit their finalized Digital Equity Plans, but also describe any changes they made to their plans in response to public comments and write a response to each comment they received.

Funding from the State Capacity Grant will support states in implementing their Digital Equity Plan over five years. Once states have received their State Capacity Grant funding, NTIA will solicit applications for the Digital Equity Competitive Grant, for which a number of entities are eligible.