By Khanyile Mlotshwa
5 December 2012
EDUCATION minister David Coltart has revealed that the government will soon launch a satellite educational television and radio channels to enable it to reach out to some of the country’s remote schools.
In a statement yesterday, Coltart said the channel will be operating from the Education Training Centre (ETC) in Mount Pleasant where refurbishments have reached an advanced stage.
Coltart said the German government was funding the rehabilitation of the centre that will include radio and television studios.
“The ETC is one of the most critically important components of Zimbabwe’s education system in that in the past it has generated a wide variety of educational materials to supplement and complement the work of teachers in the classroom,” he said.
“Twenty-five years ago it had cutting edge technology and facilities which were the envy of Africa, including two radio broadcasting and recording studios and one TV studio.
“It also had art studios which produced magnificent teaching aids.”
Coltart said the studios were under renovation “using cutting edge Apple computer technology” and will be completely refurbished in the next few months.
“This exercise has come at a critical moment in the stabilisation and redevelopment of the entire education system in Zimbabwe,” he said.
“We are just about to embark on a major exercise to review and reform the curriculum which will entail, amongst other things, the development of an array of new textbooks and other teaching materials.
“These new education applications, together with old existing materials, which will be converted from analogue to digital format using the new equipment, will be disseminated to all schools.
“ In this regard, I hope to start a pilot “school-in-box” project next year which will use tablet computers and solar technology to take these applications to the most remote Zimbabwean schools which do not have electricity or access to the Internet.”
The minister said part of the plan was to start education broadcasting.
“In years gone past, materials produced in the ETC were broadcast to remote schools and communities throughout Zimbabwe,” Coltart said.
“The new studios will enable us to do that again and now we are going to take broadcasting a step further by using modern satellite technology to have our own dedicated education channel.”