Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa has said that the migration of all Gauteng school onto the digital system will be an estimated of cost R17-billion over the next five years. This has become a concern of the public who has voiced their opinions on various platforms such as that of Frans Van Den Bergha, “So there is 17 billion to invest in this risky venture, but the 20 billion needed to keep the economy going (GFIP / e-tolls) could not be sourced?” (Bergha, 2015).
The argument that whilst most schools don’t have libraries, clean water, flushing toilets and Electricity, would it not be better to use the R17-billion to address these issues? (Akili, 2015)
The issue raised was that once technology is purchased for a school, the cost of upkeep and maintenance could be too great. Outdated software and hardware components can be incompatible with available programs, also the cost of repairing broken equipment may be too expensive for a schools budget (Silagadze, 2012).
Municipalities would budget for purchase of the tablets but would have minimal or no budget for actually purchasing software to use on the devices. The net result is that teachers will bring tablets into the classroom and have students run a few random apps to teach one concept that may not have an integrated approach (Montano, 2015).
The tablet becomes an overpriced toy that doesn’t bring a ton of teaching value. Tablets are expensive to purchase and can be even more expensive to maintain. With breakage cost and rapid depreciation of the tablets the result would be substantial costs required to maintain these devises. In addition training and support costs.
The current approach of just throwing tablets into classrooms and seeing what happens is poor and will have negative consequences.
Author: Nilesh Morar
Akili. (2015). Comments on Digital classrooms. Retrieved from Disqus.com: http://disqus.com/embed/comments/?base=default&version=af1a2e2611136ef6c314afec2806cef3&f=businesstechnology&t_i=77139%20http%3A%2F%2Fbusinesstech.co.za%2Fnews%2F%3Fp%3D77139&t_u=http%3A%2F%2Fbusinesstech.co.za%2Fnews%2Fgeneral%2F77139%2Fgauteng-launches-
Bergha, F. v. (2015, April 22). Comments on Digital classrooms. Retrieved from Disgus.com: http://disqus.com/embed/comments/?base=default&version=af1a2e2611136ef6c314afec2806cef3&f=businesstechnology&t_i=77139%20http%3A%2F%2Fbusinesstech.co.za%2Fnews%2F%3Fp%3D77139&t_u=http%3A%2F%2Fbusinesstech.co.za%2Fnews%2Fgeneral%2F77139%2Fgauteng-launches-
Montano, J. (2015, march 6). 6 Pros & Cons of Technology in Your Classroom. Retrieved from TOPHAT BLOG: http://blog.tophat.com/6-pros-cons-using-technology-classroom
Silagadze, M. (2012). 5 Problems with iPads in Education. Retrieved from Betanews.com: http://betanews.com/2012/10/24/5-problems-with-ipads-in-education