The decision to examine Information and Communication Technology (ICT) at O’ Levels in schools should be made sooner than later.
ICT is currently one of the compulsory non-examinable subjects that is taught for a period of time with the hope that it will one day get examined.
While examining the subject will not be an end in itself, it is important to notice that examining ICTs will give it more prominence.
Throughout this year, speculations in the education sector have been rife that the subject would be examined. Though no formal communication was given to that effect, the release of the O’ Level National Examinations timetable for 2011 that was done before the end of Term II, told it all. ICT was conspicuously missing.
While it remains hard to quantify how much has been done so far, one can quickly point out that more needs to be done. More weight should be put on teaching ICT. Not being adequately skilled in the ICT is tantamount to becoming extinct in today’s global internet era.
Rwanda’s vision of becoming an ICT hub in the near future cannot be beneficial if the populous and virile young generation is not substantially proficient in the ICT skills.
The ambitious ICT projects that Government has already pumped millions of money into like the ICT Park, Kigali Metropolitan Network and the National Backbone Network require highly skilled personnel to utilize them.
The tendency of students to disregard anything that will not give them marks at the end of the academic period is a big drawback to the country’s ICT vision and, for this reason, examining ICT is long overdue.
Meanwhile, as the teaching continues in schools, getting quality instructors to implement the curriculum is an issue that is less talked about but very critical.
Many of the current instructors need to upgrade their skills if they have to implement the curriculum as intended. At individual level, it is important for them to go an extra mile to learn more in order to complement the government’s in-service programs.
The next generation will not survive in the job and business world without up to date ICT skills—becoming ICT literate is not only urgent but inevitable.