The pilot of the technology framework ‘MyGovJM’, which is designed to connect citizens with Government and provide a voice for the people, will be launched soon.
Minister of Science, Energy and Technology, Hon. Fayval Williams, in making the announcement, said it will focus initially on addressing issues relating to street light maintenance.
She noted that this ‘e-participation’ programme, which involves partnership with the Local Government and Community Development Ministry, aims to foster civic engagement and open, participatory governance utilising information and communications technology (ICT).
“It is a mechanism where Government will empower its citizens to share information that will drive efficient, effective and faster-paced solutions and actively contribute to policy and decision-making around public matters,” Ms. Williams said during her contribution to the 2020/21 Sectoral Debate in the House of Representatives on Wednesday (June 17).
In the meantime, the Minister informed that a high-level design of a government-wide area network has been completed, with full implementation to start this fiscal year.
The network, which is being implemented as part of the Public Sector Transformation initiative, will facilitate the transfer of information among ministries, departments and agencies and consolidate data centres across government agencies.
Turning to the Tablets in School project, Mrs. Williams told the House that e-Learning Jamaica will complete the distribution of 65,000 devices for teachers and students during this fiscal year.
The project, which is being renamed ‘Technology in Infant and Primary Schools Programme’, will see 25,000 tablet computers being issued to teachers and 40,000 to students.
Under the initiative, e-Learning Jamaica will be providing the schools with offline servers where teachers can connect and download the content materials, which can be used offline.
Schools will also be outfitted with charging carts, which will allow for the tablets to be stored and recharged overnight.
The pilot programme saw the distribution of individual tablets to students. Under the new phase, e-Learning Jamaica will provide shared classroom sets; one tablet will be issued per three students over the life of the project and the schools will treat the tablets as shared resources, like a computer room.