In a first-of-its-kind scheme in the country, at least 10,000 lower and upper primary government and aided schools in Kerala are going hi-tech and will start getting internet facilities from November 1.
These schools will be able to get 2 Mbps broadband internet with unlimited data usage powered by BSNL, as part of the ‘IT@School’ Project, the Information & Communication Technology (ICT) arm of the state Education Department.
‘IT@School’ Project has been providing broadband internet connection to close to 5,000 High schools, Higher Secondary Schools and educational offices since 2007.
“With the addition of broadband internet to primary section also, the state’s school broadband internet network will cover 100 per cent schools with over 15,000 connections.
This will be the largest and first-of-its-kind in the country,” K Anvar Sadath, Director of the Project, said.
Education Minister, C Ravindranath, said this would be the commencement of upgradation of ICT infrastructure in the primary section.
This is in continuation of the High Tech school programme announced by the government through which all classes of Standard 8 to 12 are being upgraded with modern ICT tools.
The lower primary schools would get the new ICT Textbooks prepared on Edutainment platform titled ‘Kalipetti’ (play box) in November.
The ICT training for all primary teachers is all set to commence from tomorrow.
Along with this, the project will also make available a comprehensive Digital Content Collection prepared on Free Software platform exclusively developed for the Primary section.
Sadath said the broadband connectivity given to schools should be used only for academic and administrative purposes.
The project will implement an e-monitoring mechanism and specific training to ensure the safe and secure use of internet provided to the schools and also to gauge its usage and effectiveness at regular intervals.
Cyber Safety would be the part of curriculum.
BSNL would complete installation of broadband connections to 40 per cent of schools before December end and the remaining before March 31.
BSNL is also coming up with a unique web portal and call centre facility to address issues pertaining to the internet connectivity given to the schools on a priority basis, the Executive Director said.