Kenya: Laptops Not a Priority says one Teachers’ Unions

Computing

The Kenya Union of Post Primary Education and Kenya National Union of Teachers have been divided over the pledge by jubilee government on the introduction of laptops to all standard one pupils next year. KNUT is apprehensive about the project while Kuppet have termed it as 'not priority.'

President Uhuru Kenyatta and his Deputy William Ruto had promised free laptops to every pupil under the Free Primary Education during the campaigns period.

The union Secretary General Akello said though the move will boost ICT skills, the teachers need to be empower first before the project is implemented.

Speaking to the Star in Narok town yesterday, Misori said that there is no structural infrastructure to accommodate the laptops.

"As teachers, we want the government to prioritise recruitment of 40,000 qualified teachers to enhance learning in school," said Misori

He added the teachers' recruitment will require the government to set aside Sh15.4 billion to hire the teachers to affluence current shortage of 80,000

"It should have begun by preparing the facilitators who will be supervising the implementation of the programme,"he said.

Misori said the beginners should not start their education by using a technology but should use a pen so that they can know how to write.

The unionists said most schools are not ready for laptops because the curriculum should have first been developed to agree with the proposed digital migration.

However, KNUT national chairman Wilson Sossion said the union fully supports the government move. He said there is need to integrate ICT in the learning process as a way of achieving Vision 2030.

"This is the best time to introduce ICT skills to young minds who are still explorative and the education system should prepare them to produce competitive pupils who can compete with the rest of the world," said Sossion.

Communication scholar Kimutai Ngeno said the introduction of laptops may expose the learners to immoral sites from the internet. He expressed fears that if the information is not packaged properly young minds might be exposed to immoral sites.

"Universities and Colleges Students should have been the ones to benefit from laptops as they need to do a lot of research," said Ngeno.