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  • Students attending six primary and junior high schools in the constituency of East Kingston and Port Royal will now have access to computer tablets under a $6 million initiative spearheaded by Minister of Science, Technology, Energy and Mining, and Member of Parliament, Hon. Phillip Paulwell.
  • Dubbed the East Kingston and Port Royal Tablets in Schools Programme, it is being funded through the Constituency Development Fund (CDF), Marubeni Caribbean Power Holdings, and Jamaica Public Service Company, which have each donated $2 million.
  • Under the initiative, approximately 700 tablets are being provided, with Windward Road Primary receiving 225; Rollington Town Primary, 180; Elletson Primary and Infant, Norman Gardens Primary and Junior High, and Holy Rosary Primary, 80 each; and Port Royal Primary and Infant, 27 tablets.

Students attending six primary and junior high schools in the constituency of East Kingston and Port Royal will now have access to computer tablets under a $6 million initiative spearheaded by Minister of Science, Technology, Energy and Mining, and Member of Parliament, Hon. Phillip Paulwell.

Dubbed the East Kingston and Port Royal Tablets in Schools Programme, it is being funded through the Constituency Development Fund (CDF), Marubeni Caribbean Power Holdings, and Jamaica Public Service Company, which have each donated $2 million.

Under the initiative, approximately 700 tablets are being provided, with Windward Road Primary receiving 225; Rollington Town Primary, 180; Elletson Primary and Infant, Norman Gardens Primary and Junior High, and Holy Rosary Primary, 80 each; and Port Royal Primary and Infant, 27 tablets.

Speaking at a handover ceremony at the Windward Road Primary and Junior High School today (December 2), Mr. Paulwell informed that the gadgets will be kept at the schools.

He said every student will have at least 20 to 40 per cent hands-on access to the tablets during the school week. “The students are going to learn carefully, how to take care of them… and also that they are used for the purposes that they are intended to be used,” he said.

Minister Paulwell informed that institutions that are receiving the devices are not among those that are currently benefitting under the Government’s Tablets in Schools pilot programme.

In the meantime, the Minister said as part of the ‘Bring Your Own Device’ Initiative “all our schools are going to be properly equipped with free Wi-Fi (and) Internet access, so that you can come to school with your own tablets.”

He noted that parents will be able to access these services too, once they adhere to the guidelines and policies of the school.

In his remarks, Minister of Education, Hon. Rev. Ronald Thwaites, encouraged the students to take care of the devices and use them for their intended purposes.

He said the devices will reduce the number of books being bought by parents. “You will have access to more books on the tablets, and that’s going to be a way in which we can both save money and increase your knowledge,” he said.

For his part, Vice President of Community Renewal and Energy Solutions, JPS, Keith Garvey, said his company will explore ways to expand the programme.

In his remarks, President and Chief Executive Officer, Marubeni Caribbean Power Holdings, Tatsuya Ozono, said this forms part of efforts to provide children with the latest technological developments.

Principals, Windward Road Primary and Junior High, Norman Malcolm, and Norman Gardens Primary and Junior High Schools, Lexford Johnson, expressed appreciation for the devices, adding that they will improve teaching/learning experiences at the institutions.