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AUSTIN, Texas--(BUSINESS WIRE) -- When thousands of Texas students and teachers return to their classrooms in a few short days they will be greeted with the smiles of fellow classmates and teaching colleagues hundreds of miles away whom they have never met.

VTEL(R) Corporation (Nasdaq: VTEL) said today that installation is nearing completion of more than 60 additional videoconferencing sites on the Texas Regional Education Service Center Networks. In recent competitive reviews, VTEL was chosen to provide the hardware, software and professional services needed to video-enable school districts in Region 10 of Richardson; Region 14 of Abilene, in partnership with Texas State Technical College; Region 17 of Lubbock; and Region 20 of San Antonio. Three VTEL resellers are installing the telecommunications infrastructure, including Norstan in Regions 14 and 17; GTE in Region 10; and Todd Communications in Region 20.

The four new regions join the ranks of six other Education Service Centers in Texas that recently deployed VTEL videoconferencing systems and services, including regions in Beaumont, Ft. Worth, Waco, San Angelo, Amarillo and El Paso. VTEL is the videoconferencing choice for the Texas Education Telecommunications Network (TETN), a statewide system that connects the State's 20 Education Service Centers and the Texas Education Agency.

"It is a privilege to be chosen to partner once again with the Texas Education Service Centers to help broaden the educational horizons of students and teachers located all over the Lone Star State," said Stephen Von Rump, president of VTEL. "As the industry's leader in the education market, VTEL is committed to providing industry-leading applications and technology for the distance learning classroom."

Von Rump added that VTEL's leadership extends to higher education institutions where the company has deployed videoconferencing systems in more than 125 college and university locations in Texas alone.

The classroom packages being installed from the latest sale include VTEL LC5000TM videoconferencing units with PC-based software and instructor peripherals including tracking and document cameras and electronic whiteboards. The LC5000 is VTEL's flagship group videoconferencing system based on Intel's Pentium(R) processor and featuring standard 30 frames-per-second video. It provides the industry's most natural conference experience with fully integrated, hands-free tools and is the preferred choice for many distance education networks worldwide.

Based in Austin, Texas with offices and resellers in 61 countries, VTEL Corporation is a global leader in high technology visual communications products and services. From Internet visual communications software and services to videoconferencing systems and video-networking solutions, VTEL offers customers the most complete range of products and implementation support. VTEL serves customers in the commercial, education, healthcare, and government markets by combining the power of traditional videoconferencing with the vast reach of the Internet.

VTEL Corporation, 108 Wild Basin Road, Austin, Texas, 78746. Tel: 512/437-2700, Fax: 512/437-2792. VTEL Website: http://www.vtel.com

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