The University of Rwanda will have to wait a bit longer before using the ‘blended model of learning’ because of delaying laptops distribution allegedly caused by Covid-19 pandemic.
With a global health crisis going on(Covid-19 pandemic), ‘blended learning’ is one of many proposed models for the future of technology-assisted classroom where students are expected to reduce the physical classrooms and use online learning either at school premises or in distance learning to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
The laptops were supposed to be distributed to students in semester 1 by the university management and supplying partner, Development Bank of Rwanda(BRD), but players did not honor the promise.
“The problem of delaying laptops distribution is known, we are working with BRD to have them soon. The supplier has done some progress to make sure that these laptops are accessed,” Ignatius Kabagambe, the Corporate Communication Specialist for the University of Rwanda said during KT radio’s ubyumva ute program on Wednesday 11.
According to Kabagambe, a total of 8,443 year one students will benefit from these laptops, upon distribution.
“Students were supposed to get them during their first semester, but they have spent about a year without them. They may have to be patient and the issue will be sorted out soon.”
Kabagambe added that some previously distributed laptops had problems, they did not work well for students and the university of Rwanda doesn’t want to repeat the mistake of supplying faulty laptops.
“We are now working carefully to make sure that we supply genuine laptops, they are delayed but they will be genuine.
According to Kabagambe, the Covid-19 pandemic that hit the education sector and led to the temporary closure of schools slowed down the distribution processes of the laptops.
Year 1 and 2 at the University of Rwanda will return to school in three weeks, after about eight months of disruption that was intended to prevent the spread of Covid-19 pandemic.
“The aim of getting laptops is improving academic performances by doing various researches, this is one a year gone without them. Efforts are needed to have these laptops distributed,” Molly Muganwa, a bachelor’s degree student in public administration at the Huye campus said.
She added that “I think laptops will improve our academic performances, but importantly, we are in the Covid-19 times that need much physical distancing, you can access the internet at the campus and learn online, we need them urgently.”