Columbia, SC (FOX Carolina) - Today, Governor Henry McMaster was joined by State Superintendent of Education Molly Spearman to announce the launch of a new education initiative aimed at providing students with little to no internet access a way to communicate with instructors.
South Carolina ETV has begun exploring the use of datacasting as a way to transmit content and curriculum to students who don't have access to broadband internet.
Datacasting is the one-way broadcasting of data of information through a television signal. For years, the technology has been used to deliver encrypted and targetable public safety data to police, fire and other first responders.
Using the technology, educators can send targeted standard curriculum and instructional activities to students for them to access on their mobile devices.
Datacasting is a one-way transmission, so ETV is currently working with districts to identify a way to return assignments given to students.
The State of South Carolina is allocating nearly $1.3 million from the COVID-19 Response Reserve to expand the state's datacasting capabilities. Through this initiative, the state says approximately 5,000 students across 34 districts will be served. Right now, the state is conducting a pilot program in Fairfield, Jasper and York One school districts.
Governor Henry McMaster says ETV currently reaches 98% of households in the state, and any student that can receive SCETV's signal, will be able to benefit from the use of datacasting if broadband is not available in their area.