The government on Tuesday is set to open bids for the supply of school laptops after previous attempts were rocked by procurement scandals.
The project, which has since been revived as the Digital Literacy Programme after several false starts, will see 11,000 public primary schools receive laptops in the first phase of the programme.
A work plan from the Information Ministry shows a total of 150 public primary schools will be part of the pilot programme. And of the 150 schools selected, nine will be drawn from those offering special education.
The Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development has already developed interactive digital content for Standard 1 to 3, and is now in the process of converting the content into a universal platform by September 2015.
The ministry has trained 61,000 primary school teachers throughout the country in readiness for the programme.
Furthermore, an e-readiness survey tool had been finalized and tested by the end of July this year for administering in 11,000 public primary schools for phase one of the programme.
The government, through the Rural Electrification Authority, is simultaneously ensuring that all 22,175 public primary schools will be connected to electricity by December this year.
The National Treasury had set aside Sh17 billion for the programme in the current financial year.
The tender for the programme was advertised in early September, and the gadgets to be procured include specific laptops for teachers, learners and special-needs leaners.
“We are definitely inching closer to the implementation of the Digital Literacy Programme to Primary schools. After the proposals are opened (Tuesday), there will be an evaluation, then a shortlist. The shortlisted companies will then get a request for proposal in which they would submit their bids within a stipulated time,” said Phyllis Nyambura, a spokesperson for the ICT Authority, ahead of the event.
Under earlier guidelines, Kenyan investors seeking to participate in the contract, according to the ICT Authority, could do so either individually or in a consortium or joint venture where they are the lead partner for an expression of interest in providing project equipment.
DIGITAL CONTENT OPPORTUNITIES
In line with the project's implementation, Information Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i has invited content providers to a landmark digital content stakeholders’ workshop next month to bring them up to speed with government plans.
The October meeting will bring together publishers, content producers, innovators, animators, various government agencies and the Digischool Technical Committee.