Education Minister, Hekia Parata, today announced that the Ministry of Education is seeking a network services provider for the Network for Learning, an online network that will enable improved access to education resources for learners.
Suppliers are being asked to present innovative proposals to deliver network services such as internet access, firewalling, filtering and network helpdesk services.
Ms Parata says that the Government wants to ensure the Network for Learning can deliver a cost-effective solution for schools.
?As well as substantially reducing ICT cost and complexity for schools, the Network will support greater collaboration and sharing of resources between learners, teachers, school leaders and communities around the country,?? says Ms Parata.
?The Network for Learning will provide kura and schools with a range of core services and online content to enable 21st century education delivery to improve outcomes for learners.??
Suppliers are asked to respond to the request for proposals by late June 2012. A contract is expected to be awarded by the end of 2012 which means that the Ministry is on track to have the Network for Learning progressively available to schools from mid-2013 onwards.
Ms Parata also announced that over the next few months a new Crown-owned company will be established to run the Network for Learning.
1. What is the Network for Learning?
The Government is establishing an online network for schools which will offer affordable, safe, reliable and ultra-fast internet access as well as a range of education content and services.
2. How will the Network for Learning be governed and managed?
The Ministry of Education is currently working to establish a Crown-owned company to manage and operate Network for Learning, and ensure the successful delivery of services to kura and schools. The company will be established by mid-2012.
3. What is the Ministry of Education seeking through this RFP?
The Request for Proposal invites respondents to present innovative proposals to deliver network services to kura and schools to support the Network for Learning company in delivering a cost effective and viable solution for users.
4. When will a Network services provider be confirmed?
The RFP will close in late June 2012. Following the evaluation of proposals and negotiations with the preferred prime supplier, it is expected the contract will be awarded by the end of 2012.
5. What support is being provided to kura and schools to ready them for the Network for Learning?
The Ministry of Education will run a series of seminars during July to September for school leaders and teachers to discuss the Network for Learning. This is in addition to long-term Ministry programmes for professional learning and development (PLD), support for the Virtual Learning Network and Te Kete Ipurangi (TKI).
The Network for Learning is on target to be progressively available to kura and schools from mid-2013. At launch, the Network for Learning will be available to kura and schools that have received a fibre drop and are seeking ultra-fast broadband services.
6. What are the next steps?
As the Network for Learning develops, on-going procurement activities will be undertaken to establish content and services which meet the needs of kura and schools in improving teaching and learning outcomes. For example, these content and services may include high definition video conferencing, learning management systems, and e-portfolios, as well as administrative and learning resources.