Digital exclusion and education
Amidst growing awareness of the extent and impact of digital exclusion in education in NI and with the onset of this current lockdown, more large internet providers and mobile companies across the UK took steps to lift some data caps and provide free data to some excluded children.
In California, school districts that had initially distributed individual hotspots to digitally excluded students began working towards a more cost-efficient and permanent fix by investing in their own local wireless network infrastructure, laying down cable and installing modems and routers at existing fibre connections on light poles and traffic lights to reach all students in the school district. Some are becoming their own Internet Service Providers. For its part the City of Oakland is piloting a community Wi-Fi network in three neighbourhoods.