Hope for Rural schools as wireless network launches
Apr 11,2014 0 Comments
Schools in the rural JT Gaetsewe District Municipality in the Northern Cape Province have received a technological boost thanks to the Department of Science and Technology’s wireless mesh network initiative.
In total 55 sites which includes 28 schools, clinics and colleges will be connected through the initiative at the geographically challenged flat area of Kuruman . The wireless mesh network technology is a cheaper method to access the internet as it requests less and cost effective architecture.
Speaking at the launch of the project, Science and Technology Deputy Minister Advocate Michael Masutha said with technology at their disposal the learner’s life will be changed for the better. “The use of ICT has a positive impact on people’s life and these learners here today will be living proof of that” he said at the launch held at Learamele Special School in the area.
The project which has already been successfully implemented at the Enkangala district in Mpumalanga and Sekhukhune areas in 2010 is funded by the European Union together with the Meraka institute.
The initiative is a major boost as most rural areas already struggle with the lack of facilities like modern laboratories and updated libraries. “I am very happy that this will change the way we study especially researches for science projects. We don’t have an excuse going forward because the internet will change our lives,” Says Bogosibotsile Potsane a grade 12 learner from Rekgaratlile high school, a neighbouring school in the area.
Northern Cape MEC for Education Grizelda Cjiekella-Lecholo said the department is delighted that communication between schools, learners and district offices will be improved, “ schools will be able to communicate easily with districts and learners will be empowered through the use of technology and we are grateful for having such technology in our area,” she said.
The network infrastructure has a central point of connection and wireless links which transfer data to different communities at a specific school. The mesh network will then distribute the signal to the community from the host school.