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Additional devices to better internet access for remote learning

Across the world, governments are putting various measures into place to facilitate education and learning continues while stay-at-homes measures are in place during the pandemic.

Australia has also launched various programmes and initiatives to ensure learners and students of all levels and ages have access to training and education online. OpenGov has reported on several initiatives.

The Victorian government already have several measures in place. Emergency funding from the Victorian Government will support the state’s TAFE and training system as the student numbers are expected to drop.

Now an agreement between the Victorian Government and Telstra will see 21,000 more internet dongles delivered to Victorian students.

Minister for Education, James Merlino, announced that the 21,000 internet dongles would be made available to allow internet access by Victorian students.

This new agreement will mean a further 21,000 internet access devices will be available to support Victorian students while they learn from home.

Merlino said, “We’re making sure no child misses out on learning during this period – providing a device to every child that needs one as well as internet access to thousands of Victorian students.”

Learners in the state have moved to remote and flexible learning during the pandemic driving demand for content and access.

Almost all Victorian students are learning from home during Term 2 to increase physical distancing and slow the spread of coronavirus.

Victorian schools have been using both online and offline education materials that can be completed by students at home.

The recently launched Learning from Home website also provides online and offline resources for schools, students and families to help teach and learn remotely.

The students were already loaned over 48,000 laptops and tablets to facilitate learning.

The 48,000 devices include 29,000 laptops and tablets loaned to primary school students; 12,500 to secondary school students; and over 1,800 to special school students.

The dongles will allow them to optimise the use of their devices with better internet access. The 21,000 dongles are in addition to the 5,000 SIM cards and dongles that were already promised, bringing the total to 26,000.

The first tranche of SIM cards and dongles will be distributed to schools. Senior secondary students, students in bushfire-affected areas and families who cannot afford an internet connection at home will be prioritised.

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