Feeds

Opposition to can Aus $1.3bn school laptops program

Election fun and games

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

Australia's general election is in full swing and disputes over tech funding and tech policy continue to intrude on today centre stage.

In today's spat, shadow treasurer Joe Hockey said he would scrap the government's "wasteful" computers for schools initiative if the centre right Coalition wins.

That would mean Year 9 pupils will not get their mitts on laptops as promised by the outgoing Labour government.

Last year, the government agreed a second round of funding worth $91m (£52.5m, US$82.2m) to buy 141,000 laptops for year 9-12 students in 1400 schools nationwide. The idea is to have a ratio of one laptop per two pupils.

At the time, Julia Gillard, then minister of education, and now Prime Minister, costed a full roll-out at $1.3bn (£750m, US$£1.17bn) over six years.

Hockey disputes this - this has now turned into a $2bn program with half the number of promised computers, he told Fairfax Radio Network.

His party has not come up with its own computer for schools program yet.

But really, does Australia's schools need so many laptops? According to at least one study, admittedly investigating home use, of 150,000 children in North Carolina, computers and broadband for all increases the digital divide. Poor parental supervision of poorer children is partly to blame.

And who can say that schools will be so very wonderful in supervising the computer use of their teenage charges?

Australia goes to the polls on August 21. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
The police are WRONG: Watching YouTube videos is NOT illegal
And our man Corfield is pretty bloody cross about it
China hopes home-grown OS will oust Microsoft
Doesn't much like Apple or Google, either
UK government accused of hiding TRUTH about Universal Credit fiasco
'Reset rating keeps secrets on one-dole-to-rule-them-all plan', say MPs
Fast And Furious 6 cammer thrown in slammer for nearly three years
Man jailed for dodgy cinema recording of Hollywood movie
Caught red-handed: UK cops, PCSOs, specials behaving badly… on social media
No Mr Fuzz, don't ask a crime victim to be your pal on Facebook
e-Borders fiasco: Brits stung for £224m after US IT giant sues UK govt
Defeat to Raytheon branded 'catastrophic result'
Don't even THINK about copyright violation, says Indian state
Pre-emptive arrest for pirates in Karnataka
Yes, but what are your plans if a DRAGON attacks?
Local UK gov outs most ridiculous FoI requests...
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup
IT departments are embracing cloud backup, but there’s a lot you need to know before choosing a service provider. Learn all the critical things you need to know.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?