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Public schools leap into digital age

 | 09 December 2015

Western Australian public schools took one giant leap further into the technological world today with a $50 million investment in technology.

The boost in funding allows teachers to create wireless classrooms, greater bandwidth capacity for more efficient learning; and more laptops, tablets and other devices for primary students.

The Department of Education’s Chief Information Officer Bevan Doyle said schools had shown a strong interest in online learning.

“Schools have a very healthy appetite for online content,” Mr Doyle said.

“Over the last two years, we’ve seen schools’ internet download volumes increase from 30 terabytes a month to more than 100 terabytes a month.

“All schools will be fitted with devices to maximise bandwidth and additional wireless access points; and operate on our award-winning Standard Operating Environment (SOE).”

Glendale Primary School principal Steven Noble said ICT was a valuable tool that added tremendous depth to any teaching experience.

“The ability to connect wirelessly throughout the school adds scope to our current ICT capabilities,” Mr Noble said.

“It has allowed us to invest in devices which can be moved to any location in the school to maximise learning outcomes for our students.

“Many of our learning programs require a fast connection, allowing students to use them more effectively.”

Primary schools are invited to apply for a $20 million dollar for dollar program to update devices for students.

“We will definitely apply for this program to get more devices into our classrooms for our students,” Mr Noble said.

Glendale Primary School is also one of 300 schools to benefit from an additional $30 million for maintenance and minor works, with a complete roof replacement.

A wide range of schools will see ovals fitted with automatic reticulation, modern extraction systems installed in design and technology workshops, classrooms refurbished, food technology studios upgraded and other minor work.