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The Ministry of Education has joined hands with a non-profit organisation, Reach 4 Your Future Foundation, to implement digital literacy in selected schools in Fiji.

Speaking at a press conference on digital literacy this morning, the Ministry’s acting permanent secretary, Basundra Kumar said they are in the process of studying the proposal provided by Reach 4 Your Future Foundation outlining the benefits of the programme.

Mrs Kumar said digital literacy, a first for Fiji, looked very promising because it had an online Microsoft curriculum to enhance individual learning by the Fijian students.

Digital literacy, as an educational curriculum in most developing and developed countries, related to technology based skill requirements and the initiative will increase students’ proficiencies and marketable skills as they enter the workforce.

“It is a Microsoft accredited and certified course so it is an opportunity that awaits for our Fijian students to fill in the skills gap. The online courses will be from basic to advance to expert levels and this will allow for added qualifications for our children when they leave school,” Mrs Kumar said.

“This programme is coming free to our schools and this will enable students to benefit and compete with other students of the world through exposure to the latest technology.”

The programme will soon be piloted at Natabua High School while Lautoka Andhra Sangam is already running an ICT centre, however without the Microsoft Academy programme.

Reach 4 Your Future Foundation president, Ganesh Sen said 50 per cent of the programme was complete at Natabua High School, where they were looking at setting up 120 IT terminals.

“How we introduce digital literacy into primary schools is very important because this will become the basis of what our children will become in the future and how they utilise this technology is vital. This has many benefits and that includes motivating students in their learning due to their enjoyment, an ease of use of various technological mediums and it reaches students with various learning styles,” Mr Sen said.

“Students must also get the content that they are able to understand because everybody has difference interpretation. This programme will enable students to easily share the learning with teachers, families and peers and this gives the students to explore technological mediums, which is inevitable.”

Reach 4 Your Future Foundation will undertake the maintenance of the digital literacy centres on an ongoing basis at no cost to the Education Ministry.

The ministry and the organisation will soon be entering into a memorandum of understanding to finalise the roll-out of the digital literacy programmes in selected schools.


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