The Gauteng member of the executive council (MEC) for education and youth development, Panyaza Lesufi, together with Vodacom on Wednesday handed over upgraded reporting devices to principals across the province.
This reporting device supports the administrative processes underpinning e-platforms and remains a focal point of communication between principals, districts and head office.
A total of 2,200 Samsung Galaxy A30 devices were handed over at Birchwood Conference Centre, in a roll out which will conclude on Thursday.
“Many of our schools lack basic communication infrastructure, such as telephones. These shortcomings have posed as obstacles, impacting the Department’s ability to consistently receive incident and update reports from schools,” Lesufi said.
“Today, we can confidently say that we are well on our way to overcoming this challenge, in partnership with Vodacom.”
The MEC said in ensuring continued savings, the department identified a Samsung A30 to substitute reporting devices launched in 2014, whereby both mobile device and a tablet were issued to principals. This single device will yield the same result, with benefits of substantial cost savings.
“This long-term partnership between GDE (Gauteng Department of Education) and Vodacom continues to promote the digitisation of school management in the province. Over the last few years, this partnership has enabled schools to provide updates in real time,” Lesufi said.
“The technology has also helped school principals to remain in close contact with the department for speedy resolution of problems.”
Lesufi said the principals’ reporting platform application allows them to log amongst others, learner attendance, educator attendance, maintenance issues and security issues timeously.
He said it would also serve as a platform for all Gauteng principals to share information on best practices, amongst other issues.
“Vodacom’s partnership with the GDE continues to promote the digitisation of school management as we work together to create an environment that is ultimately conducive for learning,” Managing executive for Public Enterprise at Vodacom Rudi Matjokana, said.
“Our partnership with the GDE aligns with the South African government’s prioritisation of digital solutions to improve efficiency across all departments.”
Matjokana said the principals’ device will be incorporated into the RT15 transversal contract, with numerous benefits such as free calls to other RT15 users, and bundled SMSs, to name a few.
Through this partnership the GDE’s school network has already seen a marked improvement in issues management to date.