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Advice: Ensure Sufficient Connectivity

Recommended broadband capacity for districts


The State Educational Technology Directors Association (SETDA) provides concrete recommendations for broadband capacity, including targets for 2017/2018 and 2020/2021. Capacity recommendations for connection to the internet service provider (ISP) are based on the size of the district (number of students), which allows education stakeholders to better understand some of the nuances between very small districts (under 1,000 students) compared to large districts (over 10,000 students). The ISP recommendations are based on research; analysis of data sets from districts across eight states regarding both capacity and usage; and consultation with experts in the field.

Internet Service Provider Recommendations

Small School District (fewer than 1,000 students)

  • 2017-18 Targets: At least 1.5. Mbps per user* (Minimum 100 Mbps for district)
  • 2020-21 Targets: At least 4.3 Mbps per user (Minimum 300 Mbps for district)

Medium School District (3,000 students)

  • 2017-18 Targets: At least 1.0 Gbps per 1,000 users (Published by SETDA 2012; adopted by the FCC in 2014)
  • 2020-21 Targets: At least 3.0 Gbps per 1,000 users

Large School District (more than 10,000 students)

  • 2017-18 Targets: At least 0.7 Gbps per 1,000 users
  • 2020-21 Targets: At least 2.0 Gbps per 1,000 users

*User: students, teachers, administrators, staff, and guests

SETDA recommends that for the 2017-18 and 2020-21 school years, districts should have at least 10 Gbps per 1,000 users for wide area network (WAN) access, regardless of district size.

Strategy Resources

SETDA Website

The State Educational Technology Directors Association (SETDA) is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit membership association launched by... Learn More

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