You know you have elected a useless government when they can’t bend to listen to simple reasoning. In 2013, Uhuru Kenyatta and his counterpart William Ruto, dubbing themselves the digital duo, went about championing laptops for kids in which in their first year in office they had allocated shs 55 billion to implement. At that time, reasonable Kenyans including us voiced opposition to the project, where we advised the then new government to instead consider constructing computer laboratories, first starting with secondary schools, then to Primary schools. Our reasoning was simple: a laptop per kid in primary was going to serve only one kid at a time, but a computer lab even with as few computers as 20 per school could be programmed to be accessed by the entire school. Several years later, schools such as Uhuru Gardens seems to have seen sense and have gone ahead to implement a model ICT Hub fully fitted with interactive digital learning content based on the new Competency Based Curriculum (CBC).
Uhuru Gardens Primary School received their computers from The Kenya Private Schools Association (KPSA) in partnership with ICT Managed Services provider, Atlancis Technologies. The computers are meant to stage Uhuru Gardens as a model school for ICT integration in education. KPSA and Atlancis Technologies led a contingent of over 300 directors of private primary
schools from Nairobi County on a benchmarking mission to Uhuru Gardens Primary School, where the private school administrators were given a practical perspective on integrating ICT
in education. The goal of the benchmarking mission was to give the group a glimpse of what an ideal ICT integrated classroom setup should look like.
“We have two computer labs complete with a server room, smart boards, projectors and computer hardware fully fitted with interactive digital learning content based on the new Competency Based Curriculum,” revealed Robert Motari, a teacher at Uhuru Gardens Primary School. “Our labs can seat a total of 50 students at any given time,” he continued, further adding that it was a great honor for his school to have been identified as the ideal model school for digital literacy and that they will always have their doors open to other schools looking to benchmark.
Speaking during the event, Rosebella Ojiambo, Chairlady KPSA Nairobi said that it was necessary to host this event so that managers of private schools could be better prepared to
handle the demands of running a modern day school. “We are living in the 21st century and this therefore requires school directors to be as tech savvy as the students they take care of,”
she said. “Giving school directors an opportunity to interact with this technology enables them to have a better feel of its benefits to their students hence they are better placed to
make informed decisions,” she continued. The computer labs at the school were constructed and fully equipped using a grant from the Korean International Cooperation Agency (KOICA), with the interactive digital learning content christened iLearn developed and installed by Kenyan ICT firm, Atlancis Technologies. Ms Ojiambo welcomed such active partnerships between players in the education sector and IT companies, saying that it was important to have software in place, in the form of KICD approved interactive digital learning content to complement existing computer hardware.
“As a publisher of digital learning content, it was important for us to prioritize the CBC and KICD approval before introducing our content to schools,” said Bancy Njuguna, iLearn Project
Champion. “This way, teachers can confidently introduce learners to our content with the knowledge that it has been fully vetted by the relevant authority,” she stated. The visiting administrators were appreciative of the efforts by KPSA and Atlancis to facilitate this benchmarking mission, and unanimously agreed that the presence of a model school for ICT integration in education was a significant step in the right direction. The future of digital literacy looks bright, if stakeholders in the education sector can foster more partnerships that will enable replication of this model school