The government has been urged to take deliberate steps to invest in Information Technology (IT) infrastructure to promote online studies for students in the face of the rising cases of COVID-19 across the world.
Mr Daniel Jackson, the Managing Director of Jackson Institute of Innovation and Leadership (JIIL), who made the call in an interview with the Ghana News Agency (GNA), said the outbreak of the pandemic had provided the opportunity for government and other relevant stakeholders to pay attention to online learning.
He said investment in technology was the way to go to meet the educational needs of the people.
He underlined the need for the government to make it a policy to extend broadband to rural areas, where internet is a necessity to access quality education.
“Government can also make it a policy to start introducing laptops, tablets and even smart phones to our villages to enable students in those areas to access education through these technologies,” he suggested.
He further stated that “with an online platform, necessitated by the availability of internet services and technology products such as laptops and computers, it would be a good starting point for us to have working online platforms where tutors themselves could take advantage to improve on their teaching skills.”
“Social and emotional engagements online should be paramount. Tutors must pay attention to the emotions and state of minds of their students which is different from the face to face normal classroom engagement,” he stated.
He said online learning could get students to learn more because it is 90 per cent self-learning since some of the modules were designed to enable students to learn by themselves
He called for collaboration between the Education Ministry and telecommunication companies to put in place the needed infrastructure to drive the online learning which is increasingly becoming inevitable.
This, according to him, would not only reduce the risk of infection among the student population but also set the tone for rapid digitization of the education sector in the long term.