Press release: ISPA Promotes Circle Of Learning
Some 38 learners from Gauteng and Limpopo recently benefited from intermediate computer literacy courses held from 25 to 29 June 2007 at two schools in Lanseria and Limpopo. This was followed by the further training of 30 educators, which took place from 2 to 6 July 2007 at two schools in the Eastern Cape. A very successful ISET SETA and NQF accredited Technical course was offered to 14 educators in the Mankweng area, Limpopo.
Deputy Minister of Education, Mr Enver Surty, highlighted the challenge faced by a South Africa struggling to bridge the digital divide when he pointed out recently that only about 30 percent of schools in SA currently use computers for teaching and learning.
The teacher training programme initiated by the Internet Service Providers’ Association of SA (ISPA) has adopted a two-pronged approach to addressing the challenge of the digital divide in the education system. Firstly, the ongoing sponsorship from UniForum SA, the CO.ZA Registry, has made computer literacy more accessible and affordable to teachers from previously disadvantaged schools. Secondly, ISPA’s teacher training programme has resulted in a circle of learning being facilitated from teacher to learner and eventually reaching the community at large.
ISPA/UniForum has so far sponsored the training of approximately 188 educators this year alone in computer labs previously deployed by NetDay.
“The success rate of ISPA’s initiative speaks for itself as it has effectively trained 1 163 educators since the programme’s inception in December 2001,” says Bernie Amler, chairperson of ISPA’s Teacher Training Working Group.
“While our government is doing its bit to improve access to technology at schools, it’s useful to combine this with the necessary skills and resources to further enhance the learning process,” added Mr Amler.
Aspiring to the highest levels of service excellence and high quality learning, SETA (Sector Education & Training Authority) accredited assessors from Avuxeni Computer Academy conducted training on OpenOffice2, approved by Open Source Lecturers.
According to Evelyn Mothomogolo, Principal at Malesela Primary School in Limpopo, “Learning transcends all ages and as a leader of my school I thought it necessary to take advantage of the opportunity provided by ISPA to overcome the technology challenges faced by many people out there.”
“It is exciting to learn something new and I intend empowering female learners in particular who tend to shy away from technology to make them more eligible for jobs where computer literacy is required,” added Ms Mothomogolo.
Commitment and dedication always have rewards and 10 outstanding teachers
will be selected to participate in the “Super Teacher of the Year” awards at the annual iWeek conference in September. The awards recognise teachers that have participated in ISPA’s “Train the Teachers” project and successfully imparted their newly-acquired knowledge to their local communities.
For further information, please contact the ISPA secretariat on the Contact ISPA page.