Rhianna Mc Kenzie
The Ministry of Education has handed over 70 laptops to Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE) teachers and 98 laptops to public schools tfor students with special needs.
The Lenovo-brand devices were handed over at the Education Towers in Port of Spain. The handover was attended by representatives of ECCE centres and special schools, Minister of Education Dr Nyan Gadsby-Dolly and minister in the ministry Lisa Morris-Julian.
“As lessons, timetables and resources are prepared within this week, the ministry continues to champion the cause for teachers and students who may not have access to devices or connectivity,” said a statement issued on Thursday.
The devices were donated through the Adopt-a-School initiative, through which over 15 corporate bodies and NGOs so far are collaborating with the ministry to deliver devices to students who need them for virtual classes in the September-December term.
At a press conference on August 28, Gadsby-Dolly appealed to corporate TT to assist the 65,000 students in need of devices.
In an interview with Newsday on Monday, she said soon after the press conference, corporate sponsors reached out to pledge their willingness to assist. She explained the ministry will provide them with information on the number of schools and devices needed.
She said in the coming weeks, some schools will be beneficiaries of devices.
“We hope this would be an incentive for other corporate sponsors to come on board to assist our young people.”
Gadsby-Dolly said the ministry will also be provide recipients with basic specifications for the devices. She said primary schools can choose between tablets or laptops, whereas laptops may be the better option for secondary school students, because of the volume of work they have to do.
“Corporate sponsors will choose what school they would want to donate to (and) the number of devices they are willing to donate.
“It may not be the entire amount needed for the school, but any principal would be happy to take some. Some is better than none.”
In an interview with TTT on Tuesday, Gadsby-Dolly said the ministry had had requests from special schools for devices.
“The ministry is going to assist special schools first,” she said.
She explained special education students can get into regular schools, but they must have the tools or aids to assist them.
“If we can supply more aids, then they can get into the normal schools.”
She said on Tuesday that the ministry planned to deliver the first set of devices by the end of this week.
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