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Government forges ahead with digitisation of schools for inclusive education

Minister Muswere commissioning an ICT lab at Mufakose High School

The government is leaving no stone unturned in the quest for all schools to embrace information communication technologies (ICTs) through digitization with a view to attaining inclusive education.

On Thursday, Dr. Jenfan Muswere, the Minister of ICT, Postal and Courier Services commissioned ICT labs for schools in Harare Metropolitan Province.

The ICT lab per school project is one of the key projects which the government is undertaking in its journey to become a digital economy. The digital economy is a national priority as espoused in the National Development Strategy 1 which was launched by His Excellency, the President last year.

The minister said incorporating ICTs in learning results in a literate and educated Zimbabwean citizenry.

“The mission is to develop ICT to a level such that it will serve as backbone of teaching, curriculum development, innovation, research, administration, and service. The past decades have seen our country increasingly hungering and acknowledging the importance of Information and Communications Technology (ICT). As evidence of this, Zimbabwe ‘s literacy level has been ranked number 1 on numerous occasions hence commissioning of these ICT labs will see immense progress taking place in the community.

“It is heart-warming, Ladies and Gentlemen to note that the problems of scarce reading and teaching materials and the presence of a digital divide that has been imminent in many societies will soon fade away. Our efforts, therefore, are not in vain as it is now possible for the pupils to interact in real time, to build on their digital literacy and learn to use ICT infrastructure through the use of these ICT facilities. Through the ICT labs, students develop questioning skills and become creative and critical thinkers, they become active seekers and users of information. Pupils become competent constructors of knowledge by using the ICT lab and its resources to find information that help solve problems and develop an understanding of the world and the “worlds” beyond their immediate experiences. Pupils and educators learn to discriminate useful and valid information relevant to their tasks and most simply, children nurture their fondness towards their imaginations. I am sure therefore, that the pupils and school authorities here will make the best use of the equipment and resources that have been placed well within their grasp today,” Minister Muswere said.

At Pindi Park School in Zvimba North Constituency where Minister Muswere handed over 30 computers, the legislator for the area and Local Government Deputy Minister Marian Chombo said President Mnangangwa’s agenda for inclusive community development will result in accelerated community empowerment and the digitization of schools will help both students and the community at large.

Hon Chombo interacting with students at Pindi Park School

“We appreciate President Mnangagwa’s vision which is ensuring that no place or person is left behind. I’m grateful for this timeous donation of laptops to Pindi Park School as this will go a long way in allowing quality education for students and the digitization boost for the school will also benefit the community as a whole since they will be able to access internet services,” she said.

In addition to the laptops, Minister Muswere also handed an overhead projector and a screen to Pindi Park Secondary School.

Some students at the school testified that they had not used a computer in their entire lives whilst the school relied on one staff member’s personal laptops.

“We thank the government for this gesture as we are now able to carry out our research as we undertake our assignments under continuous assessment learning programs (CALA),” a Form 3 student, Etros Mutimbira said.

The government donated over 200 laptops to rural schools in the ebtire Mashonaland West Province.

 

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Byron Adonis Mutingwende