E-Rate Discount Matrix and Determining Your Discount Percentage:

Every school or library that participates in E-Rate must know their Discount Percentage.  The discount percentage for an E-Rate applicant is based on poverty and location of the population served by the school or library and ranges from 20% (no students eligible for free and reduced lunch) to 90% (over 75% of your student population eligible for free and reduced lunch, for Category I) or 85% (over 75% of your student population elibgle for free and reduced lunch, for Category II).  For more details on E-Rate discounts please see the E-Rate discount matrix below.

The entire E-Rate program is predicated upon how many students you have that are eligible for free and reduced lunch.  It is very important to know, schools do not have to participate in the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) in order to validate their discount level, they only have to have a mechanism for determining how many of their students qualify for free and reduced lunch.  There are many ways to do this: Surveys, Medicaid, SNAP, SSI, Federal public housing assistance or Section 8, LIJEAP (Direct Certs).  For more information please feel free to contact us or follow this link to see more [read more]

Just as important as knowing the acceptable ways, of determining your e-rate discount, is knowing the unacceptable ways of determining eligibility; Feeder School Method, Proportional Method, Extrapolation from non-random samples, Title 1 eligibility are all ineligible ways of determining your discount level and should not be used.

Category One

Schools & libraries discount matrix

Category Two

Schools & libraries discount matrix

Discount Level
Discount Level
% of students in your school that qualifies
for the National School Lunch Program is…
Urban
Discount
Rural
Discount
Urban
Discount
Rural
Discount
Less than 1% 20% 25% 20% 25%
1% to 19% 40% 50% 40% 50%
20% to 34% 50% 60% 50% 60%
35% to 49% 60% 70% 60% 70%
50% to 74% 80% 80% 80% 80%
75% to 100% 90% 90% 85% 85%