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Thaba NchuThe 2015 Youth ICT Skills Academy graduates in the Thaba Nchu DTDC6 October 2016 - The Youth ICT Skills Academy began when in 2014 Vodacom, together with its partners, the Independent Development Trust (IDT), Cisco and MICT-SETA, signed a 3 year agreement aimed at addressing skills shortages and job creation within the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) sector.

This partnership has tremendous impact on the lives of the unemployed youth that have received the ICT training to date. The participants are recruited from all over the country and undergo a 12 month intensive training programme. At the end of their training programme the learners receive an accredited certificate in A+, N+, 3G connectivity as well as a certificate in in entrepreneurship.

Run from nine District Teacher Development Centres (DTDCs) nationwide, many of the Academy’s trainees and graduates employ their newly learned skills to assist schools in their area with IT support and training teachers and learners on how to best use and maintain the equipment in their schools.

Below you’ll find the report from one of the Youth ICT Skills Academy trainees from the Ganyesa DTDC in North West, Mogomotsi Ditefo. He relates his experience visiting a primary school in Mahikeng. The challenges he encountered aren’t unique to this school and it is thanks to young passionate people like Mogomotsi that these issues become more visible so they can be addressed.

Thank you Mogomotsi for paying it forward!

 

Mogomotsi’s report:

M.D DitefoMogomotsi Ditefo employed his newly learned ICT skills to support a school computer centre The primary school I visited has one computer laboratory of 17 working computers. It has two tutors, one of them tutors for free when het gets a group of 10-15 learners together. He also understands computer support. The other tutor only hosts sessions with a least 5 learners each paying a R20.00 per month. Parents do not seem to support the computer studies at all, when I left there were only three paying learners for the computer lessons. On my arrival there were 7 of learners.

 

Achievements
I managed to identify and put forward their shortcomings such as having a network setup that doesn’t have access to use it for tutoring. I also organised a computer lesson for the teachers that find it hard to use a computer. I managed to revive two flash drives for teachers. I adviced the school Head Of Department how to keep his computer safe from viruses.

The school now knows how important the computers are to the learners though it seemed as if the school wants to operate the computer lab at a profit, something which is a disadvantage to the studying of the computer lessons.

 

Training Achievements
I taught the learners preventive maintenance such as how to shutdown the computer and wait for it to go off before they turn off the wall socket; also how to handle the other components with care such as mouse and keyboards. As the lab is full of dust every day, I recommended that computer coverings are essential. I configured a teacher’s cell phone (Samsung jc, android OS), which was not receiving private calls. I also performed shortcut remover and printer installation usage on laptops.

 

Advantages
The school has no regular IT Support and the majority of the teachers has difficulty in using the computer, whereas some of the tasks need computer literate teachers. I left a good impression by acting professional compared to their usual IT Specialist, regarding taking any action and recording of working and none working components, and especially opening their towers with their permission.

 

Disadvantages and challenges
The computer laboratory is not taken seriously, the upgrading and updating was never performed. It seemed as if I was the first person to enquire about the administrative password, which gives access to the usage of the computer lab from networking and software updating.

The principal and my supervisor were not really willing to help even when I simplified my challenges. They undermined some of recommendations I presented to them, which will cause more harm especially to the keyboards; and is the problem I found place as they lacked some keyboards due to that administration tower.

The school refused to give me access to their modem for internet access to download antivirus for the administration computers and also refused to buy empty discs for me to perform external backup. I had no access to the school LAN due to failure of organising the administration password.

 

Recommendations
1. Get router for internet access.
2. Purchase new keyboards and mouse.
3. Utilising anti-virus for all computers
4. Organise external memory for backup, so I could be able to perform troubleshooting.

 

 

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