Minister in the Ministry of Housing Adrian Leonce has called on corporate T&T to assist lower income students in the country.
“I will like to make a call on corporate T&T to come together and help us solve our problems together, providing the devices is one way to ensure that we all have the wi-fi to access the platform. Some companies might be willing to change their computers and schools and children might be willing to take refurbished laptops,” he said.
He spoke on Saturday at the distribution ceremony of 30 computer tablets at the Excel Primary School, Beetham Gardens, Port-of-Spain.
Housing Minister Pennelope Beckles, who also spoke, said due to the COVID-19 pandemic over 60,000 students are affected because they are unable to access online classes dues to a lack of broadband connectivity and computer devices.
She added that the Ministry of Education has determined that the Excel Government school requires 63 electronic devices to assist students in their online learning.
She also said the East Port-of-Spain Development Company heeded the Ministry of Housing’s call to action and partner to address the need of students.
“We are aware of the prohibitive costs of the much needed technological devices and data packages for families within the east Port-of-Spain districts. This puts our children at a disadvantage if they are unable to source the necessary equipment to get an education during this pandemic.”
She added that the East Port-of-Spain Development Company has installed free wi-fi at recreation and community facilities provided by the company throughout East Port-of-Spain.
Managing Director of East Port-of-Spain Development Company Deborah Thomas-Austin, who also spoke, said the two communities in T&T that have the least access to computers and wi-fi are Beetham and Sea Lots.
“Even though we are providing tablets, we are still working with other corporate citizens to provide internet access. In this particular set of circumstances, we really can say that no child is left behind.”