The impact of COVID-19 on education in South Africa is something no one could have foreseen. The devastating effect of this pandemic on our education and the future of our children is immeasurable as it ripples through an already struggling system.
Having a vision for a better education system and dreaming of improving learner results, for RAiN, being in the right place at the right time could never have been truer with their SchoolTree online learning project initiative. Now almost a year ago, the Western Cape Education Department (WCED) approved schools within the Metro South region that would participate in the SchoolTree online learning project. An open information session was held with the schools and the WCED, MySchool and Pick ‘n Pay in June 2019, where RAiN had the opportunity to showcase their Learner Management System (LMS) Edsby, with a full presentation of the functionality and requirements of the online learning system with its CAPS curriculum, the assessment aligned report cards and attendance registers to name just a few of its ground-breaking functionalities.
The feedback from the session indicated that infrastructure requirements for the online system was not necessarily in place at the schools and were going to be challenging to the project. The wi-fi coverage which is required for the online system is limited to admin offices at the schools or not available in some of the schools since there is not sufficient network coverage in Mitchells Plain. The other limitation is laptops or devices that users would need to have access to, to benefit from the system. It was also going to be challenging to get users that are not confident with computers to take up the technology, like for example teachers who are accustomed to completing attendance registers on A4 pages and sending it to the admin office every day, this is a huge adjustment.
MySchool supported the process of data collection for the project and Pick ‘n Pay has now made it possible for the schools in Mitchell’s Plain to participate in this project. They have been instrumental in enabling the setup of the wi-fi for the schools within the area. The wi-fi equipment has been put in place and will provide the schools with the necessary coverage to benefit from the online learning environment which is being rolled out in the project.
For more information about the project you can contact Jackie Steinschaden at firstname.lastname@example.org or call our office on 011-243 5031.