Gov’t considers turning internet cafes into ‘digital classrooms’

The Department of Information and Communications Technology is looking to convert internet cafes into digital classrooms and work areas as the country shifts to a ‘new normal’. This is especially important for those without a stable internet connection at home.

(Duterte Rejects Opening of Classes in August Without a COVID-19 Vaccine)

“We are repurposing thousands of internet cafes. They can be reconfigured to become digital classrooms and digital workplaces,” DICT Undersecretary Eliseo Rio said during the virtual hearing of the New Normal cluster of the House Defeat COVID-19 Ad Hoc Committee.

This comes as support to the government directive for public and private education institutions to prioritize online platforms for learning. The agency assured that it has sufficient funds to provide for the establishment of “very fast and very low-cost internet” in barangays.

“Kokonektahan na muna natin itong mga community para pwede na hong lakarin ng mga nearby sa community na iyan para makapag-aral at trabaho sila dito sa repurposed internet cafes,” Rio said.

[We will first put up connection in communities so that those who live nearby can just walk the distance in order to study and work in these repurposed internet cafes.]

Rio added that the agency will mobilize internet service providers to improve connectivity in these areas. They will also be working on increasing the internet speed of over 3,600 schools before the opening of classes.

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