Internet for remote areas: REIINN begins construction of second LokaLTE tower
Resilient Education Information Infrastructure for the New Normal (REIINN) project broke ground for the second LokaLTE Base Station on 14 June 2022, commencing the tower's construction in Looc Integrated School, Castillejos, Zambales.
Initiated by DOST-Advanced Science and Technology Institute (DOST-ASTI) with the funding of DOST-Philippine Council for Industry, Energy, and Emerging Technology Research and Development (PCIEERD), Project REIINN focuses on the development of application frameworks and infrastructures to support the shift to remote learning and to narrow the digital divide in the country.
Currently, the project offers two initiatives: LokaLTE and RuralCasting.
“In a nutshell, the LokaLTE component focuses on the local development and deployment of community LTE networks in the Philippines. Meanwhile, the RuralCasting component exploits the use of data broadcasting mechanisms in distributing educational resource materials in remote communities,” explained by DOST-ASTI Director Franz de Leon.
Project REIINN Technical Lead Philip Martinez, DOST PSTC-Zambales Representative Amado Dimaluluan, Jr., Looc Integrated School Head Dr. George Fronda, DepEd-Castillejos Coordinating Principal Mario Celis, DepEd-Zambales Education Program Supervisor in Science Dr. Evelyn Tarrayo, DepEd-Zambales Education Program Supervisor in Filipino Dr. Lilibeth Bacolor, and Castillejos Mayor Eleanor Dominguez took up ceremonial shovels to officially mark the start of construction of the LokaLTE tower.
“The LokaLTE Base Tower that we will build here is one of the efforts of the national government to bridge the digital gap in the Philippines. This tower will provide Internet connectivity and will aid in the continuity of learning in the community of Brgy. Looc, Castillejos,” said DOST Secretary Fortunato Dela Peña in his message.
DOST-Undersecretary for Research and Development Rowena Cristina Guevara, through a video message, shared that this milestone is only the beginning of what the project is trying to ultimately achieve: universal connectivity as well as strengthened policy adoption on spectrum management and community networks.
"We positively look forward that this (REIINN) will help lessen teachers' problems, especially with communication to the learners and parents. With this project, we can explore more ways toward the progress of the students," Fronda mentioned in his speech.
LokaLTE and RuralCasting technology demonstration and Information, Education, and Communication (IEC) program were held after the groundbreaking ceremony.