All state schools are to receive network upgrades in a project that will see the replacement of 12,000 switches and 38,000 wireless access points.
2452 state and state integrated schools had their networks installed as part of the School Network Upgrade Project (SNUP) and Wireless School Network Upgrade Project (WSNUP) beginning in 2013.
A request for proposals was issued late last week to replace the "active equipment" in the school networks, which has reached the end of its useful life, over the next four to five years.
"This is New Zealand’s largest ICT deployment, it effects every community in New Zealand, win the bid and every school child in New Zealand will access their ICT network and the internet through your switches and /or wireless equipment," the Ministry of Education tender said.
"It will allow the Ministry of Education to provide more efficient, safe and secure service offerings to schools via the managed network service currently provided on behalf of the ministry by the Network for Learning (N4L)."
The scope of this procurement includes the supply and delivery of a range of 10 switch types and a fleet of wireless access points.
Some switches serve both a core switch and distribution switch function. There are also edge switches that can serve as a core switch.
The selection choice is determined by the size of the school and the complexity of the network design, the tender said.
Configuration, bench testing, labelling, installation and onsite configuration and commissioning is not included in the tender as these will be arranged with a managed service provider.
In June, a project to upgrade the security of all schools was completed, using technology from Spark and Fortinet and the services of a panel of other partners.