780 Irish schools now have 100Mbps broadband (infographic)

8 Dec 2014

Some 780 schools across Ireland now have 100Mbps broadband, Communications Minister Alex White, TD, and Education Minister Jan O’Sullivan jointly confirmed today.

HEAnet, which manages the schools’ broadband network, said the broadband programme, which represents one of the most ambitious technology rollouts to the Irish education sector in recent times, was delivered within budget and a challenging three-year schedule. 

The national rollout followed a successful pilot phase of the programme in 2010, when a first tranche of 78 schools nationwide were connected to the HEAnet network. Government announced a decision to expand the programme to all 780 schools in February 2012.

The rollout included providing broadband to schools on four separate islands off the coasts of Galway and Donegal.

“Delivering high-speed broadband to every post-primary school in the country has involved digging streets, laying fibre cable, erecting masts and radio dishes, and installing network equipment across the length and breadth of the country,” said John Boland, chief executive of HEAnet.

“Schools have played their part in preparing for the installation of the service, with higher-education institutions facilitating access to their campuses to enable delivery of cost-effective services to schools in regional areas.

“This is an excellent example of the Government maximising public investment by using HEAnet and the higher education institutions’ shared infrastructure.”

Schools broadband image via Shutterstock

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years