South Africa’s tertiary students will receive free data for the next three months and laptops to help them with online education during the lockdown.Students Will Receive 30GB Free Data And Laptops : Blade Nzimande
“We acknowledge that the cost of connectivity remains a huge barrier for students who want to use the digital learning mode as part of our multi-modal and remote learning,” Blade Nzimande, Minister of Higher Education, Science and Innovation, said on Saturday.Students Will Receive 30GB Free Data And Laptops : Blade Nzimande
“The department has successfully negotiated with all mobile network operators a favourable rates for NSFAS students, including the Funza Lushaka students, who will receive 10GB daytime and 20GB night-time data for three months, starting from 1 June till the end of August, as subsidised by the government.”
Nzimande was speaking at a media briefing on the Post School Education and Training further measures in response to COVID-19.
He said NSFAS and Funza Lushaka students must register their sim cards to their institutions to load data to their devices. During this period, students must also not change their sim cards so as to enable their institutions to load data to their devices.
“I just want to emphasise that this data that needy students will receive must be used for dedicated online educational platforms for teaching and learning as approved by institutions.”
Electronic Network Providers, including the Mobile Network Operators, already have zero-rated educational content sites of public universities, TVET and CET Colleges, including Agricultural and Nursing Colleges. Zero-rating means that access to institutional websites will be free, although some of the embedded content like YouTube and videos will be charged for.
But students who fall within the so-called “missing middle” category, as well as students in private institutions, don’t qualify to receive free data.