- Fast broadband infrastructure
- Internet filtering
- Telecommunications reform
- Distribution of IT responsibilities
- Government 2.0
- ICT innovation and industry advocacy
- Computers in Schools
Computers in schools
Former prime minister, Kevin Rudd, announced the Digital Education Revolution (DER) scheme as part of the Labor Federal election campaign in 2007. The program expanded to signify up to $2.4 billion in funding over seven years aimed at providing at least one computer for every two students in secondary education. Funding was delivered to states, with public schools providing laptops to Year 9 students. $100 million was also provided by the Federal Government to equip schools with fibre-to-the-premise (FTTP) broadband.
The program is set to last to at least 2014 under current Labor commitments.
The Liberal party has promised to cut the Digital Education Revolution as part of its budget cuts to curb spending. It will also implement an $120 million "School Technology Fund" which will deliver grants of up to $50,000 directly to schools to spend on technology. The policy does not distinguish between primary and secondary schools, and doesn't set clear objectives on how the grants should be spent. Proposed spending could be used in:
- smart white boards and other projection technology
- implementation of Learning Management systems
- professional development in the area of lCT for teachers
- laptops or fixed computers
- printers and scanners
- digital cameras and video cameras
- extra utilities – such as additional of power points or storage facilities for ICT technologies
Funding assessments will be determined by a “School Technology Assessment Panel” to be setup under a Liberal Government, with education sector stakeholders and IT experts invited to serve. Disadvantaged schools will be prioritised under the scheme.
The Greens has voiced support for the Computers in Schools program, but retains concerns in regard to the digital divide between more privileged students and remote communities through geographic or socio-economic dimensions.