E-rate, a federal program which distributes approximately $2.3 billion each year, is designed to help schools and libraries pay for Internet access. Through this program, schools are eligible for discounts on Internet service depending upon the percentage of students they serve who are eligible for free or reduced lunch. Schools in which at least 75% of students are eligible for free or reduced lunches receive 90% discounts on their monthly Internet access fees. The lowest discount rate is 40% off monthly fees.
The Indiana Department of Education supports the implementation of E-rate by sharing program information and rule changes with Indiana schools, supporting in the E-rate filing process, certifying free and reduced lunch percentages and procuring a statewide Internet service provider.