Digital Divide in Education Sector of Bangladesh during COVID-19
Like many developing countries, Bangladesh has experienced noticeable digital divide in the education sector, which was apparently prominent during the COVID-19 pandemic period. All over the world, this pandemic urged the need for enhanced ICT infrastructures for students, teachers, and network providers in a single line to mitigate the sudden crisis on the one hand and provide access to education at all levels. This article focuses on the evolving situation in the education sector of Bangladesh as to how a digital divide has adversely affected equal access to online education. Based on 25 key informant interviews from the public and private university teachers as well as secondary data and information, this study attempts to demonstrate the tertiary-level education scenario of Bangladesh during COVID-19. The results found that the government intended to address the situation with its limited resources but could have done more to handle the education crisis during the unexpectedly-prolonged pandemic. It has been observed that access to ICT facilities is needed for an effective government initiative with an adequate budgetary allocation to ensure sustainability. Developing ICT infrastructure and taking necessary steps may reduce the existing and post-COVID-19 effects on digital divide.
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