20 secondary in Kiambu County have been awarded e-Enabled status under the the African Digital Schools Initiative (ADSI) programme being implemented in the County. The programme leads schools through 4 stages of whole school digitisation from e-Initial to e-Enabled to E-confident and, finally, to e-Mature. If the participating schools reach e-Mature stage, the will be classified and awarded as Digital Schools of Distinction. During a 2-day workshop in Nairobi, the school principals received certification in recognition of their lead roles in supporting their teachers to utilise and integrate digital technologies in their teaching. The programme has the enthusiastic support of the Kiambu county education authorities, the Teachers Services Commission as well as the schools’ boards of managements and parents’ associations.
The teachers in the 20 schools are following a rigorous ICT training programme and have already successfully completed the first two cycles - 1st on Technology Literacy and 2nd on Knowledge Deepning. Teachers are now competent in incorporating various ICTs tools in their teaching which will enrich sudent learning.
Ms. Leah Kamonye,Head Teacher, S.A Joytown, Secondary School for the Physically Challenged remarked: “Through GESCI's African Digital Schools Initiative (ADSI) Programme, S.A Joytown secondary school is capable to effectively handling learners who are differently abled ».
She added that Joy Town will be the first school in Kenya to have its students type their KNEC exams after approval from the Kenya National Examinations Council and proof that the students are comfortable with using computers as opposed to holding pens with their toes."
Mr. Njoroge, a School Based Coordinator from Loreto Girls Kiambu, said that ,through the programme, Kiambu County was able to produce the ICT Teacher of the Year (2017) and that, as a school and county at large, they look forward to achieving e-Maturity where ICTs will be part of all levels in their school.
Speaking on Behalf of the County Director of Education, Kiambu County, Ms Leah Royco,Chief Education Officer, Kiambu County commended the programme for empowering teachers and the school management at large.
Ms. Lilian Wachira, TSC Director Kiambu, welcoming ADSI, insisted on a need for knowledge sharing among the teachers and schools participating in the programme. Ms Wachira reminded the school leaders that it is their responsibility to ensure all teachers get involved.
A similar event takes place in Nyamira, Narok and Taita Taveta Counties where ADSI is being implemented. The African Digital Schools Initiative (ADSI) Programme is funded by Mastercard Foundation, Canada.
On the way forward, GESCI CEO, Jerome Morrissey, emphasized the need to have young people graduate with sufficient skills to fit in a technologically evolving environment. Mr. Morrissey also reminded the teachers and school heads that going through the three cycles of training in ADSI is an equivalent of a postgraduate qualification and GESCI is working on logistics to have certification credits from a recognized institution of higher learning.