New coding syllabus to roll out in a month's time

ICT Authority Acting Managing Director Kipronoh Ronoh (seated left) and Kodris Africa Chairman Mwaniki Munuhe (seated right) sign an MoU on the introduction of a coding syllabus in primary and secondary schools at the Teleposta Towers yesterday. [Jenipher Wachie, Standard]

The implementation of a computer coding syllabus will start in a month.

The pilot project will involve 100 public primary and another 50 public secondary schools picked across the country.

The Information and Communication Technology Authority (ICTA), which implements the Digital Literacy Programme (DLP), said more than 1.2 million laptops have been distributed, and electricity and teacher devices connected to more than 22,000 learning institutions countrywide.

"Now that the Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD) has approved content that can be used with this infrastructure, we will select schools where we will pilot this curriculum support content in the country. The Government’s ICT programme will change the lives of learners,” said ICTA Acting Chief Executive Officer Kipronoh Ronoh

Education technologies firm, Kodris Africa, is providing the content, which KICD approved last month.

Coding, also known as programming, involves translating human intentions into commands that computers can understand. The syllabus is aimed at equipping learners with 21st Century skills from elementary level.

Speaking yesterday during the signing of an MoU with Kodris, Dr Ronoh said Kenya is leading in digital technology in the entire region, and the new curriculum will put local students on an equal footing with those from developed countries.

“We have two factories producing digital devices. With the approved digital content provided by Kodris Africa, there is no doubt that Kenya is ready to go to the next level. This is not just a beneficial initiative but also transformative in nature and the authority is happy to partner,” he said.

Kodris Africa CEO Mugumo Munene said the programme will go a long way in complementing the infrastructure rolled out by the Government.

“ICTA has done a lot of work through providing laptops, tablets and connectivity. We are excited to be part of Kenya’s journey of deepening digital literacy and preparing our young learners to become architects of the digital age where they can be producers rather than merely consumers or bystanders in this digital age,” he said.

He said coding content is a valuable addition to education and enhances the learners' worldview.

“We started in Kenya but we are also rolling out in 49 other African countries,” said Mr Munene.

Kenya will be joining a list of 48 nations across the globe including the US, UK, Finland, France and Germany, who have made coding a key area of study in their curriculum.

Late last month, Microsoft Africa and the Credit Bank signed a partnership with Kodris to promote an e-learning platform for the programme.

Computer coding has become a valuable job skill in a world that is getting more digitised by the day.

 The curriculum has an easy-to-use interface and is therefore easy to teach and learn.

The syllabus, which is presented for learners through an interactive online studio, is also the first coding interactive programme to be accredited by Pearson, a global education group.

The signing of the MoU comes a month after ICT Cabinet Secretary Joe Mucheru unveiled the Kenya National Digital Master plan 2022-2032, which aims at maximising the contribution of the ICT sector to the socio-economic growth.