Stirling Council links rural schools to high-speed internet with TNP

Rural primary and nursery schools across Stirling in Scotland are receiving high-speed internet through a deal Stirling Council has struck with The Networking People (TNP).

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Rural primary and nursery schools across Stirling in Scotland are receiving high-speed internet through a deal Stirling Council has struck with The Networking People (TNP).

The council has expanded its county-wide high-capacity network to connect the 17 schools, two libraries, and three other rural public service sites to the local authority network via a high-speed link for the very first time.

The local authority is now the owner of its own "carrier-class microwave network", connecting 24 satellite offices and outlying rural schools.

The solution has replaced unreliable ADSL lines, building on Stirling’s existing infrastructure to provide the council with around 30 percent cost savings compared to an equivalent fixed-line solution.

Stirling Council’s ICT infrastructure manager Alan MacDonald said: “This has made a considerable difference to the primary schools and nurseries in our rural regions, that now have far better access to learning and teaching resources.”

Milton of Buchanan Primary School, for example, went from a 512kbps to a 10mbps broadband connection, and as a result gained access to "key online resources" such as BBC iPlayer for the first time.

The Stirling deal comes as the Scottish government is about to announce which major provider will build the Scottish Wide Area Network (SWAN), a project designed to link up the Scottish public sector.

Vodafone with Virgin Media Business, a Capita-Updata bid, and BT are in the frame.