New York -- Cablevision Systems Corp. joined with New York
Mayor Rudolph Giuliani last Thursday in linking each of the 922 schools in its Bronx and
Brooklyn franchise area to the Internet.
Cablevision president and CEO James Dolan unveiled the
"Power to Learn" initiative to reporters at a briefing at John J. Pershing I.S.
220 in Brooklyn. Cablevision will donate high-speed Internet technology to the schools.
During the press conference, Dolan only referred to the
$500 million that the MSO has committed to upgrading its 500,000-subscriber cable
operations in the two boroughs. A subsequent press release valued the donation at "in
excess of $50 million." Other industry sources put the value closer to $60 million.
That would encompass not only the equipment, but also the
MSO's assistance in training educators to adapt this technology for teaching,
In a live demonstration of the MSO's broadband
distance-learning capability, students and teachers at the first three "technology
centers" -- I.S. 220, Samuel Gompers Vocational & Technical High School and Bronx
High School of Science -- participated in a live question-and-answer session with the
One student asked, "How can a person like me become a
leader like you?" The answer: "Do what you're doing - Get as good an
education as you can."
The Internet service also includes links -- accessible at
home and in school -- whereby teachers can access lesson plans and students can go to the
Web sites of Cable News Network, C-SPAN, Discovery Channel and MSG Metro Learning, a
Cablevision-owned local channel.