How do I determine the percentage of IP Bandwidth in use in my school?

Determining the percentage of IP bandwidth available to your school can be tricky. Here are a few approaches labeled Bad, Good and Better.

  • Bad. Guess.
  • Good. If your district does not throttle or apportion bandwidth to schools, use the district percentage of use as the school percentage of use.
  • Good. If you have a fixed amount of bandwidth for the school, sit down at a few devices in testing locations in the school during core instructional periods when use is similar to the levels it might be when testing is taking place and run a speed test. The speed test that the NJTRAx team recommends is SchoolSpeedTest at from EducationSuperHighway. Calculate the mean download speed available during these periods. Measurements will vary but the more tests you do, the more likely the available bandwidth estimate will be closer to reality. If you subtract the bandwidth available from the total bandwidth for the school, this will give you the bandwidth in use in your school. Calculate the percentage of your total school bandwidth that this available bandwidth represents (see the NJTRAx Quick Start Guide for specifics) and you will have a decent estimate. If the district does not throttle or apportion bandwidth, then the percentage of bandwidth calculated at the district level should be applied to each building.
  • Better. If either you or your district has network monitoring software in place, estimates from this software, particularly mean usage calculated during core instructional periods over a number of days, will give you a far better estimate.