/28 November 2007 – /Using technology to bridge distance, the United
Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF
<http://www.unicef.org/media/media_41952.html>) and the Government of
the Maldives have opened 20 broadband-enabled teacher resource centres
to help provide quality education to a population spread across 200
Many teachers in the Maldives – an Indian Ocean archipelago made of
1,200 small islands – remain untrained because up to 80 per cent of
teacher-training costs are related to transportation.
The high transport costs meant that qualified trainers have previously
only been available in the capital, Male. Even though some 70 per cent
of the population live on islands far from the capital, the new centres
– equipped with state-of-the-art technology – will make it possible for
them to connect remotely.
"It's down to basics. Transport is costly, making it expensive and often
dangerous for children to travel between islands to get a better
education and for teachers to upgrade their skills," said UNICEF
Representative in the Maldives Ken Maskall.