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Broadband for Schools

This programme is being undertaken in partnership with industry, following the establishment of a three year €18m joint Government IBEC/TIF (Telecommunications and Internet Federation) Fund targeted at local connectivity provision to schools. In addition local connectivity would be moderated through a National Schools Network providing a range of security and content filtering facility for schools and schools assisted and advised on the process through a National Service Desk.

A public procurement process was undertaken in 2004 designed to achieve the optimal solution for each school having regard to the broadband delivery technology options available. This has now been completed and a mix of broadband technologies will be utilised in schools, including wireless, fixed line and satellite technologies.

Further to the announcement earlier this year on the results of the competitive tender process, all seven successful operators have concluded contracts and are working to connect all schools across the country as speedily as possible in what is a complex and multi-faceted project.

The final breakdown of schools awarded to successful providers is as follows:

Company Schools
Digiweb Ltd 1,655
Smart Telecom 1,033
Irish Broadband 588
BT Ireland 341
Last Mile 214
HS Data 94
Total 3,925

The breakdown by delivery technology will see the delivery of connectivity to 841 schools by fixed line (e.g. DSL), 1,507 by Wireless and 1,577 by satellite and a full schedule listing the services to be provided to individual schools can be found on the DES website at www.education.ie. Eircom will supply routers to some 3,393 schools while BT Ireland will supply same to three further schools.

These operators installed connectivity and routers up to March 2006 to primary and post-primary schools nationally.

Further details also avaible on www.ncte.ie. NCTE also provides a broadband service desk to deal with queries relating to the schools broadband network. The service desk can be contacted as follows:

Phone:        Freephone 1800 33 44 66
Email:        servicedesk@ncte.ie
Fax:           01 847 3370
Address:    P.O. Box 10101, Dublin 17
Website:    http://www.ncte.ie/Broadband
Form:        TheSchoolsBroadbandNetwork/TheServiceDesk

Note: Please quote your school roll number in all correspondence.