The Association of Education Researchers and Trainers (ASSERT) warned the government that all efforts of the Department of Education (DepEd) might become useless if it will not directly address the demand for stable Internet connection in the Philippines.

The group pointed out that the sorry state of the country’s Internet connection is the number one hindrance in ensuring access and equity in education today.

Despite the donations of gadgets like laptops and the provision of ICT tools and webinars, ASSERT noted that these will only become effective with stable Internet connectivity. They cited the DepEd Commons as an example, in which the online learning resources portal is useless without a reliable Internet connection.

“We ranked 103rd out of 139 countries [and] 61% of the 23 million households in the country have no Internet access,” said ASSERT, citing the country’s global ranking in terms of mobile Internet speed.

The group of educators reminded that the goal of education and the government should be to electrify the countryside and build the needed Internet infrastructure.

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