May 17th was World Telecommunication and Information Society Day, held in Shanghai China this year. From their website at http://www.itu.int/wtisd/index.html --"The purpose of the WTISD is to help raise awareness of the possibilities of that the use of the Internet and other information and communication technologies (ICT) can bring to societies and economies, as well as of ways to bridge the digital divide.
One of WTISD's Calls for Action in 2010 was:
- Connect all
institutions, in particular schools, in urban areas.
Schools are community hubs, a place of learning and
accessibility. By connecting schools we connect youth as
well as others in the community to knowledge and
information, leading to employment and social and economic
development. Connected schools can serve as a point of
service for underserved groups in the community, including
women, persons with disabilities and aboriginal peoples.
Call for action: ITU
Member States, Sector Members and partners are urged to help
connect all schools by 2015:
Make connecting schools a priority or formal requirement
in the disbursement of Universal Service Funds.
Include school connectivity requirements directly in
Universal Service Obligations.
Allocate radio-frequency spectrum for school connectivity
and reduce or eliminate spectrum fees for schools.
Include school connectivity a condition to obtain operator
licenses to ensure that a given percentage of schools are
connected by a specific date.
Provide incentives for operators to connect schools and to
offer special tariffs for schools, such as reduced Universal
Service Funds, contribution levies and tax breaks.