The Ministry of Education is facing a hurdle as it relates to being able to facilitate online learning for students during this 24-hour-territory-wide curfew.
Addressing the issue via the Honestly Speaking Radio Programme hosted by Claude Skelton Cline on Tuesday, Minister for Education Dr Natalio Wheatley said, “We are preparing that if schools do not reopen and the lockdown period has to continue – which nobody really wants that –certainly we would have to prepare.”
He added, “The challenge is students who do not have access to the technology either they do not have access to a device, or they do not have access to the internet.”
Dr Wheatley informed that the Ministry of Education has since undertaken a survey to ascertain the number of students who are facing the hurdle to be able to facilitate them.
Minister Wheatley said a few sponsors have come to their aid in that regard.
One such entity is UNITE BVI, who has agreed to provide 132 additional chrome books for public school students in the senior grades at the cost of $33,000.
“We want to thank UNITE BVI for that generous contribution,” he said.
However, he pointed out, the total number of chrome books needed is much higher.
Minister Wheatley said UNITE BVI also assisted in a bridging an online study platform specifically designed for the BVI.
Meanwhile, telecoms company, FLOW has provided access through their online learning platform called FLOW Study for about three months at the cost of $19,000 donation, he stated.
Additionally, “Flow has agreed as well to zero-rate some of their educational sites, so this means that students who go on these educational sites it would not take away from your data.”
He said Digicel has also agreed to do the same and has also promised to provide some laptops to certain schools around the Territory.