Give us e-books, not textbooks, school principals tell the state

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Students at St Paul’s Gekano IN Nyamira County study projected grades, January 2020. [Sammy Omingo, Standard]

Heads of schools in Nyamira County want the government to revise its policy on providing learning materials and start providing digital content instead of books.

“Currently, we no longer need textbooks for our learners, because if we are honest about adopting ICT in our schools, the government should provide us with e-books instead of textbooks,” Jared Monyancha, director of St Thomas Moore Riang’ombe High School, said The Saturday Standard.

Eric Gwara, director of Nyaikuro SDA’s coeducational secondary school, said the government should act quickly in developing “trendy and more engaging” digital content for learners.

“Modern learners are entertainment-oriented and therefore digital content needs to be developed in such a way that it can be well enjoyed and absorbed,” said Dr Gwara.

Rangenyo Girls’ High School Principal Lydia Onyoni said improving computer literacy among female learners would improve enrollment in science subjects among female students.

“For example, in my school, girls used to have negative attitudes towards physics and other science subjects. But after the introduction of computer studies, we have seen an increase in enrollment in optional science subjects, ”Ms. Onyoni said.

School leaders spoke as it emerged that a dire shortage of computer science teachers and the lack of technology-based learning facilities are some of the main obstacles facing implementation. digital learning.

In the county, only about 20 of 400 secondary schools offer computer science studies as an exam subject, according to Kenya National Examinations Council records.

However, only a few learners are allowed to continue with the subject until the fourth grade.

But the situation is expected to improve after the Andrew Wemssy Foundation, an international NGO, donated computers to a few schools in the county.

Among the beneficiaries were Nyambaria High and Nyambaria Boys, who each received 20 desktop computers.

Nyambaria High School principal Boaz Owino said the school had limited the number of learners enrolled in the subject to 20.

According to the principal, Ezekiel Okeyo, at Nyansiongo Boys, only 50 students will take computer science studies on this year’s KCSE exam. Evah Odhiambo, director of Sironga Girls, said the school has 60 computers but they are still not enough. Ms Odhiambo also said that the school had three computer teachers compared to five.

Over the past three years, the Global E-Schools and Communities Initiative, through the African Digital Schools Initiative, has empowered teachers in some schools to embrace digital learning.

Already, 400 teachers from Nyamira, Narok, Taita Taveta and Kiambu counties have been trained in digital content development.


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