, April 9, 2010 – Education transformation is being realized in Kenya and the region as governments move to new ways of curriculum delivery to improve the quality of teaching and learning through effective use of ICTs.
Software giant, Microsoft Corporation, through it education flagship program “Partners in Learning” and other ICT players, working in collaboration with the ministry of Education and the Kenya Institute of Education have convened an e-learning conference on Education to map out ways of accelerating transformation of curriculum delivery not only in Kenya, but in the region.
One of the key elements of transforming education through eLearning is a dynamic curriculum. It is for this reason Microsoft and Intel have elected to partner with Ministry of Education and Kenya Institute of Education to set up the Schools Technology Innovation Centre-STIC, at KIE to support Curriculum development in the 21st Century.
STIC is a Microsoft’s global brand for centres like these, and in Kenya we call it National Curriculum Innovation Centre that has just been officially opened by H.E the President.
The Kenya centre will serve as a hub where education leaders and teachers from the region can access the latest information on technology solutions that are proven to enhance innovative teaching and learning, thus improving the skills needed by students to thrive in the 21st-century.
Centre visitors will also be able to view research on innovative educational technology solutions, witness technology demos, participate in training, and learn from best-practice models and outcomes.
The initiative is part of Microsoft’s Partners in learning programme in which the software maker has partnered with government institutions to enhance ICT penetration and subsequently contribute to economic development.
“Our goal is to help schools gain better access to efficient, affordable and relevant technologies to promote and improve learning, foster innovative approaches to teacher professional development and provide education leaders with the tools to envision, implement and manage education transformation in the 21st Century”, said Mr. Louis Otieno, General Manager, Microsoft, East and Southern Africa.
He said access to a device opens up a new world in terms of access to information, different technologies, resources and learning opportunities.
“The computers will transform the classroom experience by giving school leaders and educators the ability to drive student achievement, performance, development and career aspirations overall”, said Otieno.
Microsoft and the Ministry of education have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to boost ICT learning in the education sector.
The STIC programme seeks to identify new technology solutions that address school needs and maximize the return on technology investments. Demonstrate technologies as part of Learning Laboratory.
According to Lydia Nzomo, Director, Kenya Institute of Education, the Information and communication technologies have a great impact in education and especially in this era when the integration of ICTs in education is a contemporary global concern and universally accepted trend.
“The use of computers in curriculum development in particular promises better and improved methods of content delivery, pedagogy as well as the expansion of the available teaching and learning resource base. Whereas technology cannot replace the teacher, in the instructional process, it forms an important and additional resource for both the teacher and learner,” said Nzomo.
It also brings together a community of Educators and policy makers where best practice may be developed, shared and replicated.
The programme sets up a forum for communications and knowledge sharing that helps provide future insight to help with long term strategic technology planning in schools.
Through curriculum review and revamping, the STIC programme envisages transforming the education sector through capacity building in schools with a projected roll out of more than 5000 teachers annually.
The Schools Innovative Technology Centre will research on new emerging technologies and evaluate their relevance to schools as well as identify strategies and models of best practice that aim to provide universal technology access provision and digital inclusion.
The centre will expand professional development framework for classroom teachers based upon critical reflective practice and global community peer support.