This year, at least 20 distance-learning centres will be available in Ontario to provide students better access to education in remote areas of northern Ontario.
According to Barbara Taylor, President of Canadore College, 27 per cent of northern Ontarians aged 15 and over don't have direct access to a college or university campus in their community. These distance-learning centres will provide the students in Cobalt, Elk Lake and Fort Albany to take courses at Lakehead University and Cambrian College among others, using audio and video conferencing. Some other communities, many heavily aboriginals, will receive money to upgrade existing technology. It's part of a plan to improve post-secondary enrolment rates in the north as stated by Training, Colleges and Universities Minister Chris Bentley. The government committs $1.5 million to fund the new centres.