Plans ready for 1,000 primary schools to pilot online learning program

Plans ready for 1,000 primary schools to pilot online learning program

The government is pushing schools to teach four subjects online.

On Wednesday, ICT Cabinet Secretary Joe Mucheru announced plans to pilot the programme during the coronavirus period and adopt it after the pandemic.

The CS did not divulge dates or subjects to be considered for the project.

Mucheru was appearing before the Senate ICT committee to answer questions about the digital literacy programme and broadband to school project.

He said planning is underway to provide school children with customised devices to aid in digital learning.

The devices will be developed in partnership with local universities.

He said the government will spend Sh15 billion to fund the ambitious project of linking public primary schools to the internet as it scales up e-learning.

The funds will be used to lay infrastructure such as fibre optic cables, build ICT laboratories, connect electricity, buy tablets for learners and train teachers under the Digital Learning Project.

Mucheru told Parliament that 1,000 public schools have been selected for the project to start next month. It will be cofunded by Unicef.

This is the pilot phase of the project in which the state is targeting the 24,000 public schools to link them to the internet under the Jubilee administration’s plan that provided free tablets.

The e-learning project is part the of administration’s plan to ensure children from low-income households who mostly attend public schools learn how to use computers and the internet from an early  age.

Private school students are more familiar with computers.

The project was rolled out in March 2016 but has drawn opposition from education stakeholders who want the state to build computer labs instead of providing one tablet per learner.

Poor access to electricity, teachers with limited computer literacy skills and dilapidated classrooms have rocked the project.

Mucheru said the government has turned to solar energy to provide power in remote areas.

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