Education Ministry to offer internet to low-income students

Education Ministry to offer internet to low-income students

Roughly 906,000 low-income students currently enrolled in federal institutions will be granted internet access by the Education Ministry, in order to take part in video conferences and other tools to enable online learning. Initially, the program will be focused on mobile data, as 90 percent of federal students own a smartphone

Access will not be unrestricted, however, as the ministry informed it may provide access to a set of previously allowed websites. Also, they are considering whether to provide a chip with free internet or working with mobile carriers to offer service without data consumption for those who have data packages. The program is expected to last for six months. The government is also considering hiring fixed broadband, perhaps even with 5G capabilities, over the next 12 months.

According to Education Ministry data, the class stoppages in federal institutions — including universities and schools — have affected 1.8 million people, among them students, teachers, and employees. Among the vulnerable students, 40 percent live in the Northeast region of Brazil.

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