Government Projects for Breaking the Digital Divide
Digital divide is a term that refers to the gap between those who have access to digital technology and does who don't. The differences can be seen by economic factors (being rich or being poor), racial factors and geographical (cities, rural areas).
To help break the Digital Divide the Salvadoran government has created several projects, three of them which will be explained briefly:
The Infocentros project is an institution that contributes to the development of El Salvador by using information and communication technologies. Since its beginnings in 2002 the Infocentros have helped to educate more than 340,000 Salvadorans in Internet and computer technologies. Projects like this help bridge the so called “Digital divide” and make Internet access to people who wouldn't have had the opportunity to use the Internet at their homes. There are 41 Infocentros in El Salvador.
The accomplishments of the Infocentros are large and have contributed to the development of the Internet in the country. Thanks two them more than four thousand small business websites have been created. This has made many people aware of the benefits of the Internet.
Another big accomplishment of Infocentros is the education of hundreds of students and professionals on Internet Technologies.
The project has been so successful that it was awarded with the “World Summit Award” in the category “e-Inclusion” in 2003.
The Operación Red project is organized by the Ministry of Education that was launched in 2004, its main goal is to teach Internet Technologies to the best students of high school. The course contains topics ranging from basic Internet navigation to creation of websites with graphics and animations. After receiving the course on Internet Technologies, the participating students are required to teach what they have learned to their classmates, in that way the knowledge of Internet technologies is multiplied.
Conéctate is one of the main projects of the Red Solidaria project of the current government. The main goal of the project is to provide the national education system with technological tools to improve the quality of education. The Conéctate project consists on:
Grado digital: A government certification on the usage of basic technologies.
Edunet: Project for providing Internet connectivity to public schools.
Mi Portal: Internet portal for Salvadoran Students.
Computers for schools: Equipping public schools with computers by means of donations.
Author: Rodrigo Noyola
Title: Development of the Internet in El Salvador
Published: Monday, May 14th 2007
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