Teachers who received devices under the Government’s ‘Tablets for Teachers’ programme are benefiting from technical support through e-Learning Jamaica (e-LJam).
As of September, more than 20,000 public-sector teachers were equipped with a personal tablet as part of the terms of the Heads of Agreement signed between the Jamaica Teachers’ Association (JTA) and the Government of Jamaica (GOJ) in 2018.
The devices will assist the educators in delivering content and lessons in a virtual environment, especially since the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) has transformed the teaching/learning atmosphere.
“We’ve established a service assurance help desk, so if teachers are experiencing difficulties or challenges using the tablets, they can contact the help desk,” Chief Executive Officer of e-LJam, Keith Smith, told JIS News.
“To access this free service they can send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or access it from the e-learning website www.elearningja.gov.jm or call (876) 929-4044 or WhatsApp (876) 578-3696.”
Mr. Smith said that some teachers have already reached out and utilised the services of the help desk and are now more comfortable with using their new devices.
“So we want to encourage others to make use of the tech support being offered,” he urged.
Mr. Smith noted JIS News that e-LJam is aware of the wider challenge of connectivity and the Government is actively working on policies and programmes to address the issue as part of the wider technological advancement drive during this time.
Meanwhile, as it relates to the tablets for students in infant and primary schools, he said that 34,000 of the 40,000 devices have already been procured.
“We are expecting the next shipment by the end of October and we are currently finalising the distribution list, which is determined by the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information. We intend to commence distribution to the various infant and primary schools once that list is finalised,” Mr Smith said.
The tablets will be rolled out in shared class sets to approximately 800 infant and primary schools islandwide as approved by Cabinet.
The initiative also includes the provision of charging carts and offline content servers, laptops, and audiovisual projectors.