Teachers must embrace Information, Communication and Technology (ICT) training if they are to properly mould pupils for the future.
So said acting Chief Education Officer John Roopchan as he addressed teachers during an ICT Professional Development programme held at Naparima College in San Fernando.
Roopchan admitted that more needed to be done to foster an ICT culture in all schools. He said even though ICT has been beneficial, there has been a negative impact to the educators, especially those who seem unwilling to embrace the technological changes.
“Some challenges include students accessing illegal websites; students cutting and pasting rather than generating their own work; students choosing online communication rather than real life conversations,” Roopchan said.
He said while teachers are being trained to use ICT to complete tasks with more efficiency, this type of teaching was not currently as widespread as the Ministry wanted it to be.
“The use of ICT is very important to encourage independent and active learning and self-responsibility for learning,” Roopchan said. “It enables self-paced learning, provides access to a wider range of up to date learning materials, enriches learning through a combination of audio, video, images, text and animation,” he added.
However, Roopchan said possible negative impact must never be outlooked.
Through the ICT programme, Roopchan said, teachers, are learning to utilise smart solutions for the future including laptop learning, e-learning, smart classrooms, didactic equipment and stimulations.
He said through the ministry’s 5-Star ICT plan, a structure has been developed to coordinate ICT initiatives as well as retrofitting schools to accommodate technology. He said there will also be a curriculum revision and upgraded connectivity in schools.
Roopchan also said 13,000 laptops were provided to all secondary schools last year.
Reporter: Radhica De Silva