The integration of information and communication technology into rural schools of South Africa :a case study of schools in Malamulele /
Thesis (MPhil (Information Science))--University of Stellenbosch, 2007.
The world has advanced and grown to a stage where a person without a basic computer literacy finds it almost impossible to function comfortably in society. To address the situation governments all over the world are encouraging their citizens to become technologically literate. Countries are spending large sums of money to integrate ICTs in education. The South African government on its part has realized and acknowledged the importance of Information and Communication Technology in education. Hence, its White paper on e-Education, which provides for the integration of ICTs into schools. This study looks at efforts being made by the Department of Education and other education stakeholders to address the ICT situation in some schools based in a rural area of the Limpopo Province. A well-resourced school in so far as ICTs are concerned was visited to assess the functionality and applicability of ICT within the school system and to make comparisons to less resourced schools. The study highlights the plight of schools in rural areas where the lack of basic amenities such as adequate accommodation, furniture, water, etc. is the order of the day. It is however pointed out that dwelling on these issues is no solution as the question of ICT integration into schools is a non negotiable one, if South African learners are to be kept abreast with trends in other parts of the world. That is, without adequate immersion into ICT, learners would not be globally competitive. The ICT situation in schools in the Limpopo Province has been analysed within a framework developed under this study. The framework is set to help the Department of Education determine the suitable intervention programmes for each level of ICT integration. In addition, the study concludes with a recommendation. The success or failure to integrate ICT into schools, especially those in rural areas, depends to a large extent on the kind of intervention the government adopts. Since all schools have not attained the same level of ICT integration, there should be a clearly defined audit to determine what is needed and how it should be provided. This study raises some of the key issues for integration of ICTs in schools within a rural setting.