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01-06-2003, 21:35   #1
Delphi91
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"Telecoms to fund broadband in schools"

Not sure if this is "old" news or not, but I came across this article in todays Sunday Times:

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article...698785,00.html


As a computer teacher in charge of IT in a school, I gotta welcome this if it pans out.

Only possible fly in the ointment is that the telecoms pass on the levy in the form of increased charges for Joe Public.


Mike
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01-06-2003, 21:39   #2
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Delphi, does your school currently have internet access? Is it via Dial up or ISDN? How much does it currently cost?
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01-06-2003, 21:43   #3
Mixie
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AFAIR through Eircoms IAS (Information Age for Schools) Primary and Post Primary schools can have a number of hours / day they can use the Internet (dialup definately, don't know about ISDN) for free.
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01-06-2003, 21:48   #4
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Yes, the reason I was asking was that I imagine that a lot of schools, even with this Eircom scheme, are paying more on dial-up and ISDN than they would on, say DSL, even so called 'business' DSL at 100 euros a month. I've heard that the time available is around 2 hours. I could well be wrong, though.

I would say, therefore, that the problem to date has been as much availability as the actual cost of broadband which may well save them money.

<edit: I'm still in favour of the measure in order to promote IT in schools.>

Last edited by SkepticOne; 01-06-2003 at 21:52.
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02-06-2003, 00:10   #5
Delphi91
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Under the IAS (Information Age Schools) and the IT2000 scheme, schools were given "free" internet access.

We had a 56k line at the start, and this was upgraded to an ISDN line automatically. In terms of "free" access, the way it was done was that schools were given a certain amount of credit which then went to pay for their net usage. If memory serves me correctly, it amounted to something like an average of 1 hour per day. The catch was (and still is)that even if you didn't use this time, you were still charged line rental for the ISDN line. This also came out of the credit. So, over the summer period, when there would be no student net access, the credit still decreased due to line rental.

I'd love to be able to get DSL because the speed at which 24 pc's share an ISDN line is absolutely chronic. Interestingly enough, I checked whether we were eligible or not for ADSL recently using the www.adsl.ie site and nope, we're not. So, I am wondering what changes are going to have to be made to make us eligible? Are they gonna move the school closer to an exchange? Or maybe enable some more exchanges? What about schools out the country which are a long way from an exchange?

Mike
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02-06-2003, 00:29   #6
SkepticOne
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Quote:
Originally posted by Delphi91
I'd love to be able to get DSL because the speed at which 24 pc's share an ISDN line is absolutely chronic. Interestingly enough, I checked whether we were eligible or not for ADSL recently using the www.adsl.ie site and nope, we're not. So, I am wondering what changes are going to have to be made to make us eligible? Are they gonna move the school closer to an exchange? Or maybe enable some more exchanges? What about schools out the country which are a long way from an exchange?

Mike
It is worth enquiring about. Will the government also subsidise ISDN for schools that simply don't meet Eircom or Esat's criteria for DSL. Maybe they will provide satelite internet free of charge.
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02-06-2003, 02:11   #7
Detonated Sauce
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Last time I checked in my school the ISDN was connected for 7 days and 21ish hours, sure is a bit more than 1 hour a day
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02-06-2003, 16:34   #8
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You think 24 PC's sharing an ISDN line is chronic? Try having about 120 PC's sharing an ISDN line in a so called "Multimedia" college course.

Surely... surely anyone can see it would be cheaper to get a 2mb DSL line than have 128k ISDN running from 8am - 5pm each day?

Sigh.
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02-06-2003, 18:37   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by Detonated Sauce
Last time I checked in my school the ISDN was connected for 7 days and 21ish hours, sure is a bit more than 1 hour a day
I didn't mean that you can only connect for 1 hour a day. This figure comes about by calculating the cost of the credit which Eircom provide and dividing it by the cost of being online. It works out at approximately 1 hour per school day. Now that doesn't mean you can only connect for 1 hour a day - you can do it anyway you want. Tis like the UTVip system of 150 hours per month - connect anyway you want to, not just 5 hours per day.

We leave the admin computers permanently connected to the net through a router and disconnect them when we use it in the lab (yes, I know, I should get another router!). The router drops the connection if there is no activity for 20 seconds or so, so they don't use up the time by just being connected.

Mike
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02-06-2003, 19:42   #10
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I wonder if this will end up being a massive subsidy for satelite resellers?
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02-06-2003, 19:47   #11
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That school thing, it isn't that it averages one hour a day,like 30 hours free a months or something, its that it is one hour a day at 56k and full line rental.
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