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The Government of Curaçao and Digicel sign an agreement on the School Digitalization Project

Friday March 5th, 2021 was a historical date for the Government of Curaçao, Digicel and the 118 schools on Curaçao across the different school boards, as a project that will offer high-speed Fibre Optic internet to 118 schools has been set in motion. This project comes after the Ministry of Education, in collaboration with Bureau Telecommunication and Post requested Companies to design a plan for the digitalization of schools on Curaçao. The Digicel proposal was selected out of all participants by the Ministry of Education as the best suited technically and economically.

When designing this plan, many important elements were taken into consideration, for example a flexible and advanced technology was required that allows a higher quality of service and the highest speeds. This project will use Digicel/TRES Fibre Optic Network, since Fibre Optic technology is ideal for this application and robust enough to provide a solution of this scale, while also allowing expansion as the needs of the schools and/or students grow.

For the School Digitalization Project three types of internet speeds were chosen to be installed at each school, based on the number of students at each school and the required needs of each school. Metro Ethernet connections of 100 Mbps, 200 Mbps, and 300 Mbps were chosen as the base speeds. All the schools will connect to a shared bandwidth located at a centralized Data Center, which allows an overall control of the websites that the students are permitted to use and has the ability to block harmful, illegal or inappropriate content for our students. More importantly, this ensures that the bandwidth is used efficiently as possible, keeping costs to a minimum.

The schools

Of the 118 schools that form part of the project, many are near to or already have Fibre connected already. This means that 60 schools can be turned on very quickly. The CEO of Digicel, Mr. Roeland van der Hoeven stated, “Digicel’s objective in this project is simple; ensure that ‘No child gets left behind’ and that all students have equal opportunity in their education.”

Mr. Van der Hoeven expressed gratitude to the Government of Curaçao for this partnership, further demonstrating that public and private partnerships can bring great benefits and efficiencies, in this case to the educational system, schools and students in Curaçao.

“We care deeply about the success of our people, particularly our younger generations, and look forward to working with Government of Curaçao and the Ministry of Education to continue to explore different ways to elevate our youth and our nation through ICT”, said Mark Shoebridge, Director of Business Solutions for Aruba Bonaire and Curaçao.

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