Minister On A Mission To Solve Online Learning Issues
The Minister in charge of Higher Education, Blade Nzimande, has said that work is being done to patch up the holes when it comes to students across South Africa accessing online learning. This includes NSFAS laptops and connectivity issues.
Now that we're more than a year into online learning programmes, students are still lodging complaints with some not having had access to eLearning at all. The Minister addressed these issues and seems to be optimistic when it comes to the level of success the country will see with online learning.
Heher Commission has said that the success rate of online learning needs to be investigated as it has now become the main method of learning and teaching due to the pandemic but has presented many challenges.
The Minister of Higher Education, Blade Nzimande, said, "A lot of our Universities are already following that route".
More than 60% of students have access to a digital device to participate in online learning.
NSFAS promised students laptops in early 2020 and have now, more than a year later, instructed students to order their laptops online.
NSFAS has said that the delivery of the first batch of laptops will commence this month.
Covid-19 has given us a wake up that is why part of the budget now that we are trying to protect for our Universities is to build that capacity for online learning.
Blended learning, which is a mix of online and contact learning, is the future, according to the Minister.
Nzimande has said that he'll be appointing an expert team to advise him on what is needed as a country should the country go online.
An issue tied to online learning is that of connectivity. Some students are located in rural areas where there is bad connectivity.
Nzimande has said that this is a national issue and they have worked to figure out where these areas are.
More than 90% of the country at least has 3G connectivity but in these days of 5G, it means we need to do a lot more to invest now, in infrastructure, so that we are able to have effective digital support.
The department is also providing training for people who will then be able to support a swift move towards digital capacity for the country.
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