First 25 schools now connected under National Broadband Plan
679 schools will be connected to broadband by the end of 2022 in an acceleration of the National Broadband Plan (NBP) announced by the Government and NBI this Thursday.
Under the originally planned roll out, some schools would have had to wait up to seven years for connection. Now, all schools will be connected within two years.
Some 70 schools across the country in the Intervention Area will become Broadband Connection Points (BCPs) by the end of Q1 2021, receiving 150mb high-speed connectivity for educational access.
The first 25 schools have already been connected, incuding Achonry National School in Sligo, St Joseph’s National School in Laois, St. Kevin’s National School in County Wicklow, St Joseph’s National School in Galway, Ballagh National School in Roscommon, Ennistymon National School in Clare, Calry National School in Sligo and Balscadden National School in Dublin.
BCPs delivered under the NBP will ensure that primary school pupils in rural Ireland will be able to participate fully in the digital revolution that is taking place. A BCP at a school location will provide connectivity for pupils and teachers and will underpin the Department of Education’s Digital Learning Framework for Schools.
County breakdown of primary schools to be connected by the end of 2022
Speaking about the initiative, Taoiseach Mícheál Martin said: “Some 50,000 children in almost 679 primary schools will be connected with high speed broadband by the end of 2022. This is an investment in education, technology and rural Ireland. The NBP will allow all parts of the State to take full advantage of the opportunities that lie ahead. Fast-tracking connectivity for schools is a great first step.”
Minister for the Environment, Climate and Communications Eamon Ryan TD said: "The NBP is a transformative project for rural Ireland which will see fibre rolled out to every household, school, business and farm in the Intervention Area. Today’s announcement will give 679 rural primary schools earlier access to the huge variety of online educational resources which high-speed connectivity can provide. Through the NBP, Ireland will ensure that every school, no matter how rural or remote, has access to world-leading high-speed broadband.”
Minister for Education, Norma Foley said: I welcome the news that NBI is accelerating its rollout of high speed broadband to primary schools and my Department will continue to work with the Department of Environment, Climate and Communications on this project.
"Schools to be provided with high speed connectivity as BCPs in the first year of the NBP furthers the Government’s implementation of the Digital Strategy for Schools. With 679 rural primary schools to be connected to high speed broadband through the NBP Intervention Area Plan including the BCP Programme, our aim is that the vast majority of schools in the Schools Broadband Programme will be provided with high speed connectivity by 2023, including those in the NBP Intervention Area to be connected by the end of 2022.”