Kia ora koutou
You may have heard that schools throughout the country are about to receive online learning resources and fast connectivity to the internet via The Network for Learning Limited, an organisation which was set up a matter of weeks ago.

We are delighted that the government has allocated some $400m during the next decade and that these Network for Learning fast connectivity and core services will come at little or no cost to schools and kura.

Our mission is to help schools and kura, educators, Boards of Trustees, communities, and most importantly students, to unleash learning potential by embedding fast, dynamic, ‘learning-to-learn’ technologies and services.

The Network for Learning will provide a package to all schools, whether you’re connected via Ultra Fast Broadband (UFB) or the Rural Broadband Initiative, so that you get not only fast, quality connectivity but also curriculum enhancing service offerings. These are likely to include high definition video conferencing, safe and secure internet, and a range of innovative applications. More will be added over time as technology progresses and we learn about what is important to you.

We will be working hard to assess and provide as many appropriate online resources as possible, either as part of the core package or as additional options. These services are likely to be a ‘pick and mix’ so you can select what is important to you and your learning community.

So, what do we need you to do?
Right now we need you to focus on professional learning and development so when The Network for Learning’s offerings are in place you can use the technology and benefits available. We know local fibre companies, rural broadband teams and the Ministry of Education are working to connect schools but our recommendation is that you do not lock your school into long term contracts (beyond one year) with broadband suppliers until you know what our service timeline looks like.

We will be making announcements and providing regular updates during the coming months, the next of which will be at the opening of the ULearn conference in Auckland on 11 October 2012. I hope to meet as many of you there as possible.

It’s early days, but we wanted to share this short update with you. Please feel free to be in touch via the contact details below with any feedback or questions you may have.

We are committed to seeking your advice and input, and are delighted and honoured to work with you all to ensure our students, and indeed New Zealand as a whole, receive ultimate value and benefits from this incredible initiative.

The Network for Learning Limited