KIGALI - The Ministry of Education has already stocked a total of five thousand Laptop computers to be used in primary and secondary schools, The New Times has learnt.
In an interview with the Director of Information Communication Technology (ICT) in the Ministry of Education, Eugene Karangwa, revealed that this is the first consignment the One-Laptop-per-Child (OLPC) initiative has donated to Rwanda and that another 5,000 is on the way.
“The official launch of the distribution process of these laptops is set to begin in September immediately after the installation process is complete,” Karangwa explained.
According to Emile Ruberwa, the Press Secretary in the Ministry of State for Primary and Secondary education, the distribution process is set to start with Primary schools, beginning with Kagugu primary school where the official launch will take place in September.
“We started with training teachers in computer literacy. They also started training pupils to attain basic computer skills to facilitate their usage of these Laptops,” Ruberwa said.
The cost of each computer ranges from $100 to 120. OLPC is committed to stepping up computer skills from the basic levels so that rural schools can also be uplifted.
“The laptops donated to us are durable and friendly to our environment in that they can be used by pupils in all geographical and physical conditions,” explained Ruberwa.
The government of Rwanda committed herself to the initiative in 2007, which was to take five years with a goal of equipping pupils at the basic academic levels with computer skills.
This was a strategy for achieving the country’s vision of transforming Rwanda into a knowledge based economy by the year 2020.
The first batch of this program took place in 2007, where pupils of Rwamagana primary school walked back home each a laptop richer.
The possession of these laptops by both primary and secondary pupils will help to speed up the education sector’s drive towards Information Communication Technology realization, facilitating its programs like the digital library and open learning exchange.