LGfL, VMB strike deal to boost broadband bandwidth for schools by 200%

LGfL expands partnership with VMB to double broadband bandwidth of schools.Image: LGfL expands partnership with VMB to double broadband bandwidth of schools. Photo: courtesy of Michal Jarmoluk/Pixabay.

London Grid for Learning (LGfL) has expanded its partnership with telecommunications provider Virgin Media Business (VMB) to boost the broadband bandwidth of the former’s community of nearly 3,000 schools in the country by 200%.

The improved £50m commitment between the two parties is expected to boost the capacity of LGfL’s Ignite National Education Network and help in transforming digital learning at a number of schools.

Over 1.2 million school kids are expected to reap the benefits of enhanced digital classrooms and faster connection speeds courtesy of the partnership between the educational tech provider charity and Virgin Media Business.

The increased bandwidth will allow the schools to deliver augmented and virtual reality, one-to-one student/device ratios, and live-streaming into the classroom. Furthermore, the schools will get access to public sector networks Eduroam and Govroam for remote working, which otherwise need a high bandwidth connection to be effective.

Schools will also enjoy future-proof technology that can be upgraded quickly and remotely, which saves both time and money in case they want to enhance their connection in future.

Virgin Media Business managing director Peter Kelly said: “By providing thousands of schools with an ultrafast, safe and secure digital platform, we’re revolutionising the classroom and giving children the tools and skills they need to thrive in the digital age.”

Owing to the deal, schools that are part of LGfL’s Ignite Network will now benefit from internet speeds of up to 1,000Mbps at no additional price.

All schools, under the refreshed plans of LGfL, can avail free upgrades to a minimum connection of 100Mbps with a scope to boost their connection speed to up to 1,000Mbps.

Apart from increased internet speeds, schools will benefit from advanced firewalling that will keep their systems secured from hackers and other cyber threats.

LGfL CEO John Jackson said: “Our plans to boost bandwidth will be complemented by investments in cybersecurity, reflecting our priority to not only provide one of the fastest networks for schools but one of the safest. By providing this huge boost to UK Education at no extra cost LGfL is achieving its mission to save schools money whilst ensuring they are fully equipped for the future.”

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