INTERNET BOOST. Information technology experts check the internet speed at the Balacad Elementary School on July 7, 2020 following the installation of a very small aperture terminal (VSAT) satellite communication system to boost internet connectivity. The school is among the 10 remote public schools in the city with weakest or no internet connectivity so far. (Photo courtesy of Rbee Ablan)
LAOAG CITY – Another rural school in this city has been installed with a very small aperture terminal (VSAT) satellite communications system meant to boost internet connectivity here.
Laoag Schools Division Superintendent Vilma Eda said Wednesday that at least 10 public schools with weak communication signals are being prepared for the VSAT installation which is expected to be completed before the opening of classes on August 24.
The ongoing VSAT installation project was funded through a school-based fundraising drive which aims to generate PHP1 million for the establishment of the satellite communication system for schools with weakest or no internet connectivity.
To date, organizers said a total of PHP669,266 was already raised from cash donations, pledges, and sales of washable face masks and shirts.
Among the first schools in the city to have installed VSAT are the Bacsil Elementary School, Calayab Elementary School, and Balacad Elementary School with an average internet speed of 27 mbps.
“The speed is good enough for online activities,” Information and Technology officer Almadin Domingo said.
Domingo said the department is closely coordinating with telecommunication companies to facilitate the installation of fiber connection in schools with poor internet connectivity, such as the Balatong Integrated School, Cabeza Elementary School, Gabu Elementary School, Gabu National High School, and Cavit Elementary School.
Eda also reiterated the importance of technology to ensure the smooth implementation of the learning continuity plan of the department amid the challenges of the ‘new normal’ education.
Meanwhile, Nenita Respicio, senior education program specialist of the SDO Laoag, said there are ongoing seminar workshops for public school teachers in the city to brace educators for a transformative learning environment and empowering students to become 21st century learners.
The training program started last July 2 and this will end on July 25, 2020.
Another orientation program is also being prepared for parents and guardians of learners in the next few weeks to make them aware of the ongoing set-up and challenges of education under the ‘new normal’ system.
The DepEd is offering schools some alternative learning methods including online learning and offline methods, such as take-home readings and activities. (PNA)
Photo Credit: Philippine News Agency