Satellite systems for Samoan schools

Satellite systems for Samoan schools

From Samoa comes news of the official opening of the Pacific Satellite Connectivity Project, which, it is hoped, will improve telecommunications access for a number of students and villagers on the island of Savaii.

The ceremony took place on 13 June at Itu o Tane College, Avao on Savaii, the largest island in Samoa. With the Minister of Communications & Information Technology and the Office of the Regulator (OOTR) attending, among other dignitaries, this is clearly seen as an important event for remote communities in the area – and with good reason. Students will now have telecommunications-led access to a wide range of knowledge – including tutors for online tutorials, materials and assistance.

It will also make it easier for villagers in and near Matautu, on the central north coast of the island, to access information when mobile services are down or if there is no radio communication during and after disasters.

Five VSAT satellite dishes, installed in five sites, all of them schools, support connectivity. It is hoped that VSAT connectivity will be expanded over time. All five schools will be able to use the link to access the Internet for free for a period of 12 months. The Regulator will send a report to ITU and Kacific for review before the end of this period.

The Pacific Satellite Connectivity Project was made possible with assistance from the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) and Kacific Broadband Satellite Company (Kacific). The OOTR will provide technical assistance. The ITU and the Samoan Government signed up to the project in 2014 as part of the Small Island Developing States meeting.


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