IBM wins $6m schools deal

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Victoria’s Department of Education and Training has signed IBM Global Services to deploy wireless networking for some 1600 schools in that state.

Victoria’s Department of Education and Training (DET) has signed IBM Global Services to deploy wireless networking for some 1600 schools in that state.

The project is worth about $6 million and would involve IBM integrator Logicalis teaching DET staff how to use the technology.

Simon Walsh, an IBM business unit executive at Logicalis, said the new 802.11g network with 9000 Cisco access points transferring data at speeds of up to 54Mb/s would be the largest of its kind in Asia-Pacific.

“The wireless network is expected to [allow teachers and administrators] any time, anywhere access to education tools and applications,” he said.

Wireless networking could help multiple parties collaborate without being restricted by their physical locations, Walsh said.

Jacinta Allan, education services minister for Victoria, said the project was part of a Wireless Networks for Schools (WiNS) initiative.

WiNS was expected to improve the ability of schools to use information and IT to provide a “more flexible, mobile and creative” approach to learning, she said.
 
The new wireless network would also support a Notebooks for Teachers and Principals program that aimed to give teachers laptops to use at work.

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