The Government will start distributing digital devices (laptops) under the Digital Literacy Programme (DLP) tomorrow, in a move that will see more than 1.2 million laptops distributed across the country by December 2016.
The devices include laptops for teachers, tablets for pupils and braille embossers for special learners, projectors, digital content servers and wireless routers. The distribution will be handled by cabinet secretaries and principal secretaries, starting with 60 public primary schools.
The move sets pace for the country’s techy-savvy generation. “In the beginning of August, the Government received the first batch of the digital literacy devices with the cargo from China. To date, over 160,000 devices have been received with more expected weekly,” said ICT Cabinet Secretary Mr Joe Mucheru at a media briefing at the Ministry’s offices, Teleposta Towers, Nairobi, today.
The event was attended by cabinet secretaries of Education Dr Fred Matiang’i and Energy Mr Charles Keter.
The ICT CS said the digital devices are fitted with the Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD) approved content, of which the content for Class One and Two are already available.
“The digital content for Class five to eight can also be accessed and downloaded for free. The cloud allows educational publishers to upload their content which will be available to allows students in the DLP through multiple platforms,” he observed.
Mr Mucheru said over 70,000 primary school teachers have been trained on incorporating ICT in the classroom learning process, adding that beginning October, more than 1,000 teachers will be trained weekly in counties, sub-counties and zonal levels.
The ICT Ministry has also dispatched skilled ICT officers to support teachers and guarantee quality in delivering the programme. They include recent ICT graduates under the majority of who are alumni or current participants of the Presidential Digital Literacy Programme.
The CS said plans are underway to commence the assembly of devices locally, with consortia of JKUAT/Psotivo BGH and Moi University /JP Courto already setting up assembly plants. JUKAT is set to begin its assembly operation in October 2016.
Mr Mucheru said the rollout of DLP is in line with the Smart Africa Initiative. It will hasten the process that commenced in May, with pilot phase that saw 12,000 devices delivered to 150 schools.
Other agencies participating in the include The National Treasury, The Office of the Attorney General, Teachers Service Commission, Kenya Institute of Education, Kenya National Union of Teachers and the Kenya Primary Schools Heads Association.