Ireland’s first digital schools will pave way for digital citizens

23 Sep 201063 Views

This autumn, the first 78 schools across Ireland will go live with 100Mbps broadband connectivity.

When Bill Gates went to secondary school, the mothers’ club in the school used the proceeds of a fundraiser to buy what then passed for a personal computer for the students as well as rented time on a General Electric computer. Gates took an interest in programming and was excused from maths class to learn BASIC. The rest is history.

Two and a half decades later, a young high school student called Mark Zuckerberg – although immersed in the study of Latin and capable of reciting entire verses of the epic poem The Iliad – built a software programme to help his father’s colleagues communicate better, plus a music program that learned users’ listening habits. Both AOL and Microsoft tried to recruit the teenager, but he chose to go to Harvard. The rest is history.

What do these stories tell you? They illustrate how important it is that young people who need to succeed in the 21st century are able to immerse themselves in technology. This is a point that Communications Minister Eamon Ryan TD underlines.

Read more of ‘Ireland’s first digital schools will pave way for digital citizens’ at Digital 21.

For more, see Digital Schools Week. – Digital 21 is a campaign to highlight the imperative of creating an action programme to secure the digital infrastructure and services upon which the success of our economy depends.

John Kennedy
By John Kennedy

Editor John Kennedy is an award-winning technology journalist. He joined Silicon Republic in 2002 to become the fulcrum of the company’s news service He was recipient of the Irish Internet Association’s NetVisionary Technology Journalist Award 2005 and has been awarded ‘Best Technology Site’ at the Irish Web Awards seven times. In 2011 he received the David Manley Award commending him for his dedication to covering entrepreneurs. His interests include all things technological, music, movies, reading, history, gaming and losing the occasional game of poker.

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