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« on: July 31 2012 »

by Brian Gondo, ZimTech, July 25th, 2012

eLearning Solutions a Zimbabwean company setup in the year 2000 is the governmentís implementing partner in the Presidential elearning Program. The company which started out as a research and development outfit is now a significant commercial provider of education solutions. The company is involved at the Chogugudza Primary School site which was the first to implement the Presidential eLearning Program and most recently at the Landa. J. Nkomo High School.

Itai Masimirembwa, CEO of eLearning Solutions indicated that they have also carried out awareness workshops to thousands of educators that include school heads, teachers, administrators, inspectors and parents. This awareness training includes their involvement in Manicaland in the various workshops with to education practitioners.

e-Learning refers to making use of electronic equipment such as computers and telecommunications to facilitate the learning process and modern e-learning is highly interactive and collaborative. This is made possible by the use of Internet based technologies. The classroom program is not just about the use computers but involves pedagogy and teaching practice. This involves creating appropriate language, public policy, and curriculum issues and ICT facilities hardware. The machines used are Classmate PC netbooks, purpose built for education, with rugged design, preinstalled software-suite optimised for education and webcam & WiFi.

eLearning Solutions are the local partner for the Intel Teach program which they adopted in an attempt to benchmark their offering with global standards and trends. Intel has been previously involved with the One Laptop Per Child project but withdrew citing a conflict of interest between the projectís and its business interests. Masimirembwa notes that the Intel initiative is to prepare Zimbabwean teachers for 21st century teaching and learning approaches as well as digital literacy.

The company is also offering Digital Pedagogy Certification which has seen over 700 teachers in Zimbabwe become part of the 10 million teachers worldwide that are certified 21st century educators. The company has conducted training for teachers from over 60 schools, both primary and high schools. Other than training education professionals in the primary and high school system the company has also trained Master Trainers at Gateway Christian Training College and they are process of training Mutare Teachers College.
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