New cell sites to rise in 26 DepEd locations to support online learning

Published May 14, 2021, 11:42 PM

by Merlina Hernando-Malipot

In an effort to support the online learning initiatives of the government, the Department of Education (DepEd) Cebu and Globe inked a landmark partnership to build 26 new cell sites.

Online learning is one of the multiple learning delivery modalities implemented this school year amid the COVID-19 pandemic. (JANSEN ROMERO / MANILA BULLETIN)

Globe is embarking on a P338-million landmark partnership with the DepEd-Division of Cebu Province with the construction of 26 new cell sites in 26 DepEd locations.

The new cell sites will be built in 26 schools Cebu and are expected to provide internet connectivity to around 36,000 students and 1,550 teachers and neighboring communities.

Under the memorandum of agreement, DepEd Cebu will offer its premises free of rent for the said cell sites. For its part, Globe will furnish DepEd schools in the province with free broadband and Wi-Fi services.

“We are now in the digital age where internet connection is already a need, not a want,” said DepEd Cebu Province Regional Director Salustiano Jimenez.

Through the groundbreaking partnership, Jimenez expressed hope that more students will be able to fulfill their educational requirements amid the challenges brought about by the pandemic.

“We look forward to working closely with Globe in building the cell sites that will help our staff, students, and even their families gain improved access to the internet,” Jimenez said.

Senior Vice President for Globe Business Peter Maquera explained that the Philippines is “falling behind in terms of remote learning” – with many students are still struggling to keep up with their classes due to a lack of connectivity tools to help them meet school requirements.

“The establishment of more cell sites will mean better access to quality education for students and a digitally-enabled future for families,” Maquera said. “This project with DepEd Cebu Province is a first of its kind—a proof that progress amplifies when two or more organizations work together in reaching their goals,” he added.

DepEd and Globe have long been working together in integrating information and communication technologies in the Philippine education system.

DepEd-Cebu and Globe inked a landmark partnership to build 26 new cell sites to support online learning (Photo from Globe)

In 2020, Globe and DepEd worked together in providing teachers and students with free access to DepEd Commons which contains online review materials and Open Educational Resources (OER) authored by public school teachers.

Likewise, Globe assisted DepEd in training educators for distance learning through a modified series of webinars under its Global Filipino Teachers (GFT) program.