My Thoughts on Technology and Jamaica: How JA$114 million spent on Math, English and Science for TIS Project Tablets by January 2015

Saturday, November 22, 2014

How JA$114 million spent on Math, English and Science for TIS Project Tablets by January 2015

Tablets seem to be getting the lion’s share of Media attention these days.

Especially after a 15 year old boys succeeded in hacking one of the GOJ (Government of Jamaica) TIS (Tablet in Schools) Project Tablets as reported in my blog article entitled  “Male Student hacks TIS Project Tablet as Distribution Expands - Tablets Problems require Creative Jamaican solutions to deliver Lessons to the Learners We Teach”.

The Ministry of Science, Technology, Energy and Mining is pressing ahead however, with Minister Phillip Paulwell signing a contract worth some JA$114 million with Book Publishers for e-book and Web content for the Tablets as reported by the Horse’s mouth, the Jamaica Information Service in their article “Government Spends $114M on Content for Tablet Computers”, published November 13, 2014 By Chris Patterson, the Jamaica Information Service.

On Wednesday November 12th 2014, Minister of Science, Technology, Energy and Mining, Phillip Paulwell signed some JA$76 million worth of contracts with Local and International Publishers for Electronic Content i.e. e-books, Web Apps and Websites access for Educational Content as echoed in the newspaper articles “Govt spends J$114m on content for Tablets in Schools”, published Wednesday, November 12, 2014 6:29 PM, The Jamaica Observer and “Government Spends $114 Million On School Tablet Content”, Published: Thursday November 13, 2014 10:06 am, The Jamaica Gleaner.

Specifically, these JA$76 million in contracts have tied up deal for content for the following types of content to be on the Tablets come January 2015 for the lower primary to the secondary level.

1.      Mathematics
2.      English Language
3.      Sciences

So yes, people, subsidized Tablets costing some JA$9000 are coming pre-loaded with Electronic Book content!

JA$114 million on Content for the TIS Project - Teachers Padding Booklists to get Commissions a thing of the Past

So yes, folks, 2014, Minister Phillip Paulwell is keeping to his word about Tablets being subsidized and Books being placed on the Tablets in Electronic form i.e. e-books, Web Apps and Websites access for Educational Content  as explained in my blog article entitled “TIS Project a Success with Boys - JA$9000 for Subsidized Tablets as TIS Project replaces 600,000 Students School Books with e-books come September 2015”.

Instead, the prescribed Text will be pre-loaded onto the Tablets, dealing a blow to many Teacher who like to secretly push students towards buying certain Texts that they may have co-authored for which they're collecting a sales commission from a local book store based on the assertion of The Jamaica Observer article “Book racket”, published Sunday, August 31, 2014 by HG HELPS Editor-at-large, The Jamaica Observer.

More interestingly, some JA$108 million is left out of that amount for Electronics content for the other Subjects, both at the  lower primary, secondary level up to sixth form, which is mainly CXC Textbooks.

Those CXC Text may already be in Electronics Book form as Digicel has already demonstrated is possible with their Tablet partnership with Cyber School Technology Solutions as noted in my blog article entitled “Digicel partners with Cyber School Technology Solutions to provide 800 Tablets with CSEC Tutorial - Corporate Spirit spreading to help Schools get Tablets” .

With some JA$1.4 million spent thus far, by September 2015 and possibly as easily as January 2015, Students will no longer have to carry books. I hope too in giving the students Tablets, they'll also teach them how to care for these Tablets as well as stated in my Geezam blog article entitled “How to make your own Cleaning Fluid and Cleaning Tips for your Smartphone or Tablet”.

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