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ONE MONTH LEFT TO IMPLEMENT E-TEACHING AND E-LEARNING

By: Nghiinomenwa Erastus

The government has only November and December 2021 to fulfill its HPPII promise of enabling e-Teaching and e-Learning in Namibia schools.

According to HPPII the government planned to supply senior secondary schools with connectivity (internet access), data, and devices.

The target is 3 066 senior secondary school teachers and 74 210 learners with suitable devices and internet connectivity, during 2021.

This is under the progression pillar of the HPPII, goal 4, named Improved Quality of Public Education & Sports.

The pillar is headed by the presidential advisor on youth matters and enterprise development, Daisry Mathias.

While Scott Richards is the project lead for the goal.

The targets of this goal and the aim are to enable everyone to study, learn, and fulfil their full potential and also to ensure everyone has the infrastructure they need to connect to the rest of the world.

Is estimated that the execution of the project will cost N$290 million.

The Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted the digital inequality between urban and rural schools in the country- as only a few schools in urban settings were able to implement e-learning.

The combined effect of school closures, limited access to digital infrastructure, and increased financial hardship has taken a toll on the country’s quality of education, compromising their education and longer-term prospects, studies found.

Online learning was accessible to only very few children who had the financial means and their schools had digital and telecommunication infrastructure.

The government targeted enabling e-learning by December 2021, as the planning was done. with the HPPII first-quarter report update showing that execution of the project was ongoing.

The quarterly report, however, did not provide details on how much work was completed as it approach the project closure date.

For next year, under goal four, Mathias and the team plan to facilitate an establishment of Educator’s (teachers) Professional Regulatory Body to improve the quality of training of educators and prescribe minimum standards for the profession.

At the same time finalize a National Human Resource Development Strategy and Implementation Plan that will identify priorities and allocate commensurate weights to funding allocation, during 2022.

In the same year, HPP11 promise to establish industry skills committees within all universities.

The committee will enable the private sector contribution to curriculum reform, to pursue the effective accumulation of requisite skills and a demand-driven education system that is responsive to the economic transformation agenda.

Jointly with the private sector, HPPII also promises to assess outcomes of the piloted Apprenticeship Programme (2018- 2020) in 2022.

The government intends to expand it into a National Internship and TVET Apprenticeship Programme, with economic incentives for participating businesses commencing 2022.

In 2022 also, under goal four an impact assessment of NSFAF will be carried out.

It HPPII also promises to conclude the Student Funding Policy and Sustainability Model, to improve fund administration, coverage, and loan recovery by 2022.

In terms of sports facilities under goal four of social progression, HPPII promises to establish sport franchise hubs in all 14 regions by 2025.

Under the same pillar and goal, Nkurenkuru residents are promised a Youth and Sports Centre by the end of 2023.

Overall goal four of the social progression pillar promised and plans to construct 4 300 additional classrooms out of the 5 169 required countrywide.

Moreover, it plans to provide basic infrastructure such as water, sanitation, electricity, and internet at schools, and subsequently, 100% of the schools in Namibia will have access to potable water points.

The quality of learning at the early childhood development level will be improved and sports at the grassroots level will be supported leading to the professionalization of sports in the country, read goal four of the social progression pillar.

The social progression pillar in the HPPII aims to alleviate poverty by arresting hunger, poverty; delivering urban land, housing, and sanitation; improving access to public healthcare.

Furthermore, to improve the quality of the public education system and arrest the scourge of gender-based violence and violence against children. Email: erastus@thevillager.com.na

Julia Heita

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