Telstra to upgrade NSW education fibre network for $328m

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Telstra to upgrade NSW education fibre network for $328m

Tenfold increase in internet speeds expected.

Telstra will upgrade the fibre network that serves NSW's more than 2000 public schools under a $328 million deal with the state government.

The upgrade, which has been brought forward by three years, will see the telco roll out more than 5200 kilometres of fibre over the next 18 months.

It is expected to result in a tenfold increase in internet speeds, ensuring students and teachers have access to faster, more reliable internet in both metropolitan and regional areas.

Telstra first deployed fibre - delivering speeds of between 4Mbps and 100Mbps - to all NSW public schools and TAFE institutions under a $280 million deal in 2010.

Education minister Sarah Mitchell said the upgrade will give NSW students access to some of the fastest internet speeds offered by any public education system in Australia.

"I want to ensure every child in NSW has the opportunities to be the best they can be, no matter where they live or what their circumstances may be,” she said. 

"This upgrade will bypass existing network constraints meaning all our schools will be on a high-speed connection in the next 18 months, three years ahead of schedule."

Mitchell added that the upgrade will resolve bandwidth problems that can arise from hundreds of students and teachers accessing school internet as part of day-to-day learning.

"The internet speed will no longer constrict teachers' lessons, and they will benefit from more reliable video conferencing and professional development opportunities," she said.

Telstra enterprise group executive Michael Ebeid said the upgrade will give students “access to the amazing learning opportunities that quality, high-speed connectivity brings”.

"Once complete, Telstra will have rolled out more than 5200 km of fibre across every corner of the state, making this one of the largest fibre networks in the world,” he added.

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