National
1,000 secondary schools get computer labs
Publish Date: Sep 10, 2013
1,000 secondary schools get computer labs
  • mail
  • img
newvision

By Innocent Anguyo

The government through the Uganda Communications Commission (UCC) has established fully equipped modern computer laboratories in over 1,000 government-owned secondary schools across the country.

Speaking at the Uganda Institute of ICT in Kampala on Friday, Bob Lyazi, the Director of the Rural Communication Development Fund at UCC said about $10m had been invested in the initiative.

Each of these laboratories carries at least 40 custom made computers built to suit conditions in Uganda’s secondary schools.

There are about 1,050 government-owned secondary schools in Uganda. According to Lyazi, the remaining schools will get computer labs in the next one year.

Lyazi further disclosed that of the 1000 computer labs, 600 have already been connected to the internet while the rest will acquire internet within the next one year. Other than being used as a fountain of knowledge by the schools, Lyazi said the computer labs are also been used to impart Information and Communication Technology (ICT) skills in residents.

“ We have so far imparted over 50,000 people across the country with ICT related skills such as computer maintenance, internet connectivity, computer repairs, CD burning, website designing, computer science among others,” said Lyazi.
 
The residents who live close to the secondary schools make use of the computer labs during evening hours and on holidays when not in use by the students. However, the terms of enrolling in the training are subject to negotiation between the schools and the residents.
 
“We are proud of this project. Uganda is the only country in Africa where there are computer labs in nearly all government schools. Because we have computer labs in these schools, starting next year, computer studies will be compulsory at A level and Uganda will be the first country in Africa to take such a move,” said Lyazi.
 
“The idea behind this project is that, ICT should become an integral part of the lives of Ugandans. ICT also needs to be integrated into our education system because ICT’s are awash with infinite information. At the end of it all, our country will get easily transformed once these ICT skills become widespread across all villages in Uganda,” added Lyazi.
 
The project to establish computer labs in secondary schools is a five year program launched in late 2007. Asked why the project was not rolled out to primary schools, Lyazi said it would be unaffordable for government now since there are over 13,000 government owned primary schools in the country.
 
Lyazi was speaking as guest of honor at the graduation of 250 primary school teachers from Kampala’s Nakawa division who underwent a month long training in an ICT introduction course conducted by the Nakawa based e-Learner Uganda.
 
Packages taught included IT basics, Word Processing, Power Point Presentation, Internet and Browsing, Spreadsheets and Introduction to hardware. The training fees were sh60, 000.
 
e-leaner is a software company that has developed software assimilated with curriculum for the Ugandan education system. It has software for pre-primary, primary, secondary and higher institutions of learning.
 
According to Mike Watkins, the Chief Executive Officer of e-Learner Uganda, the company plans to roll-out the training to other division of Kampala and thereafter the entire country. The South African born company operates in 13 other African countries.
 
“These soft wares will simplify teaching and learning in Uganda, imagine exposing children to wide array of knowledge as early as four years.
 
The packages for older people have topics on governance, HIV, peer influence, bullying among others,” said Watkins. Charges for use of the software are subject negotiation between the schools and e-Leaner but when the cost is passed onto the students, it could be as low as sh2, 000 per month.

The training was sponsored by Simbanet, a regional ICT company offering voice, video and data services to enterprises and individuals. Simbanet has introduced (in Uganda) KA band, a newly launched satellite providing broadband service across the globe.
 
According to Allen Chimhende, the Simbanet general manager, the company is currently running a promotion where clients can acquire the equipment for free and pay for a business package of 15Mbps which can go for as low as sh230, 000.
 
“This technology is faster, cheaper, easy to install and more reliable because it is directly linked to the satellite, so you can install it on your own and comfortably use it in the remotest village,” said Chimhende. Simbanet is located on Ggaba road, Kansanga, Kampala

 

The statements, comments, or opinions expressed through the use of New Vision Online are those of their respective authors, who are solely responsible for them, and do not necessarily represent the views held by the staff and management of New Vision Online.

New Vision Online reserves the right to moderate, publish or delete a post without warning or consultation with the author.Find out why we moderate comments. For any questions please contact digital@newvision.co.ug

  • mail
  • img
blog comments powered by Disqus
Also In This Section
Army chief urges youth on hard work
The Chief of Defence Forces, Gen. Katumba Wamala, has cautioned the youth against impatience urging them to devote their energies to productive activities. He said most youth spend time watching movies which have given them an illusion of a rather glamorous life...
Rakai launches campaign against teenage pregnancies
Rakai district has partnered with local charities to end child marriages. This follows reports of an increase in the rate of school dropout among girls.According to the Abubeker Lutaya, the Rakai district schools’ inspector, child marriages have contributed to girl child school dropout...
US Embassy empowers Kampala youth
Sports betting and gambling are fast becoming a serious challenge to youth employment in Kampala City since majority of losers in betting resort to crime including robbing and hitting people with iron bars....
‘Jamwa did not cause any financial loss to NSSF’
City lawyer Fred Mpanga has asked the Court of Appeal to acquit former NSSF managing director David Chandi Jamwa of abuse of office and causing financial loss....
Works ministry calls for UNRA independent procurement
The Uganda National Roads Authority (UNRA) has paved 305km of roads this year closing in on the national development target of 1,100 kilometers of roads to be paved by 2015....
NMS procures 6400 mattresses for hospitals
ACCORDING to the Ministry of Health facility Inventory July, 2013, they are 48 government general hospitals with a bed capacity of 6000, 170 heath centres IVs with a bed capacity of 6,800...
Should diplomatic passports issued to ex-govt workers be with drawn?
Yes
No
Can't Say
follow us
subscribe to our news letter