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November 2, 1995

AT&T COMMITS $150m TO PUT US SCHOOLS ON INTERNET

By CBR Staff Writer

Putting the British Labour Party to shame with the token commitment to run spurs to schools and public libraries from its fibre optic network in return for the freedom to deliver broadcast material over its lines (who was the last person you met who decided not to sign up for an on-line service simply because he could not afford the connection charge?) AT&T Corp plans to get itself into the good books of Newt Gingrich and Al Gore alike by committing $150m to help put the 110,000 public and private elementary and secondary schools in the US onto the Internet by the year 2000. The company proposes to provide technology that is easy for teachers to use and effective in helping students to learn. The five-year AT&T Learning Network programme begins next spring, and AT&T will make available at no charge some of its newest services – free dial-up Internet service, browser software and 100 hours of free usage, after which connect time will have to be paid, but there will be discounts on Internet services and messaging service for the balance of the programme. The company will also offer free use of its forthcoming US voice-messaging service for three months so educators can broadcast messages to parents and students. And AT&T says it will also choose 100 schools to receive free on-campus wireless telephony service for two years.

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