Last week, the government unveiled the DigiSchool brand, to serve as the vehicle for the Jubilee laptop program. The government also invited interested public institutions with the capacity to create local assembly lines to apply for participation into the project. In the annual budget, Government set aside Kshs. 17.58 billion for deployment of ICT learning devices to schools, development of digital content, building the capacity of teachers and rolling out computer laboratory for class 4 to class 8 in all schools throughout the country. The government intends to deliver the project by January 2016, as the students are joining for their first term.
One of the key pillars of the project has been the development of the content to be taught to the pupils. The Kenya Institute of Curriculum development has developed digital content for standard 1-3 with conversion onto a universal platform set to take place by September 2015. The content was initially to be availed through windows devices but porting it to a universal platform ensures that from any device be it an android phone, a macbook or Amazon Kindle, the student can access the content.
The Kenya Institute of Curriculum development is thus engaging with the Communications Authority of Kenya with the intent of incorporating the “Be The Cop” child protection campaign into the Digital literacy Program. In offering training to the over 61,000 teachers to be involved in the project, KICD has incorporated an entire unit on child protection in its curriculum.Even with this training, more needs to be done owing to the scale of the project as well as the number of children who will be accessing the digital content. “Be the Cop” campaign was launched as a partnership between service providers Google, Orange, Airtel and Safaricom, The Department of Children Services, United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF), Childline Kenya and the Communication Authority of Kenya. It seeks to sensitize parents, guardians and teachers on the various types of crimes children are exposed to on the cyberspace. The campaign also seeks to protect children besides providing avenues for redress in the event of a cyber crime. The partnership with CA is thus timely and will avert the fears of naysayers of the project.