Ultrafast broadband rollout for schools on track

The roll out of ultra fast broadband-enabling fibre to schools is progressing well and will see nearly 100,000 students at 221 schools around the country connected by July of next year, says Education Minister Anne Tolley and Communications and IT Minister Steven Joyce.

The Ministers were commenting following the release today of details of the first 200 schools to be connected by Chorus, one of the Crown’s four partners for the UFB rollout.

During the same period, four schools in Tauranga, four in Wanganui and one in Hamilton will be connected by Ultra Fast Broadband Limited and a further twelve schools will be connected in Whangarei by Northpower.

Mr Joyce says 97 per cent of schools will receive ultra fast fibre enabling speeds of 100 Mbps plus over the next five years.

“The remaining 3 per cent of schools, which are in the most remote locations, will receive a high speed wireless or satellite connection. No schools will miss out.”

Mrs Tolley says UFB will transform New Zealand’s education system, making it one of the most wired in the world.

“Fewer than 200 New Zealand schools currently have bandwidth capable of the ultra-fast broadband speeds that are essential for applications such as high definition, two-way video conferencing.

“This technology means that students anywhere in New Zealand can have access to the best teachers and online resources anywhere in the world.”