In a bid to make do in the wake of coronavirus, varsities like University of Nairobi are asking students to attended their classes online.
On 23rd March University of Nairobi Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Stephen Kiama addressed the UoN fraternity and put emphasis on e-Learning and utilization of digital content sharing platforms to foster continuity of programs and to facilitate completion of studies. Prof. Kiama insisted that the temporary closure is not a holiday for varsity staff and student; but a time for the university to continue on with learning.
Some lecturers have already put out a call on Twitter asking students to submit their papers. Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Research, Innovation and Enterprise Madara Ogot is asking students to send research paper abstracts.
However, the online classes seem to be a poorly thought-out solution has hundreds of students are unable to access internet while away from the campus.
Poor internet connectivity as well as various other factors have led students to stage a boycott on Twitter, sharing their grievances.
One comrade shared a very well-worded argument pointing out the real obstacles students face, in the hopes of attending online classes.
The statement from Prof. Kiama was shared after President Uhuru Kenyatta in conjunction with Minister of Health Mutahi Kagwe ordered all institutions of higher learning shutdown as of March 20th as reported by Capital News.
Perhaps there is need for telecommunication providers and government parastatals such as Kenya Power and Lighting Company to partner up with public universities to make online learning a reality.
The initiative could be the first of the many steps required to see e-learning a viable option of the hundreds of learners who strive for knowledge but yet have mammoth challenges to overcome.
As Coronavirus continues to dominate public conversation in the nation, it is still unknown when the pandemic will peak or at what point the curve will flatten leading infection rates to dwindle in Kenya.
Until then, all mass gatherings including schools will remain closed.