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Tuesday, 12 March, 2002

De Hoop Primary School opens new computer centre

Statement by André Gaum, Western Cape Minister of Education, who opened De Hoop Primary School's new computer centre today (Tuesday, 12 March 2002).

It was a great pleasure for me to open De Hoop Primary School’s new computer centre this morning.

The school has been raising funds for this centre since 1996. At the end of 1997, the first centre containing 22 computers was built. Initially the aim was to achieve computer literacy among all the educators and learners.

Meanwhile, a committee which was to implement a second computer centre was formed and fund-raising continued. I warmly congratulate De Hoop and its community on the magnificent achievement of raising the funds needed to provide and equip this their second computer centre.

The purpose of this centre, which the school has equipped with 30 brand-new computers, is to teach a variety of basic computer skills. The original centre will now be used for the application of these acquired skills by integrating the subject-matter in the various learning areas of the curriculum with technology in order to produce the required outcomes.

In line with De Hoop’s community outreach policy, the principal, Mr Wynand Cillié, has announced that the school will adopt a previously disadvantaged school and that both the computer centres and an educator will be available to teach them computer skills.

I need hardly spell out the vital importance of enabling every one of our learners to learn the skills and attitudes they will need to prosper as adults in this Information Age, dominated as it increasingly is by the global knowledge economy and the new industry of knowledge management.

In order to meet this challenge the Western Cape Education Department (WCED) has embarked on the Khanya Project, a far-reaching enterprise aimed at enhancing education through the use of technology as well as giving learners in all our schools the opportunity to acquire not only information but also the necessary skills to profit by communication and audio-visual technology.

To do this, we aim to equip every school with a learning platform consisting of computer and audio-visual equipment that will make the teaching and learning easier for all. By the end of this year all the schools in the Western Cape will have at least one administrative computer connected to the Internet. This means that we can begin the electronic delivery of resource and support material.

I have asked Khanya’s programme manager to work closely with De Hoop, not only to support the school in its drive towards the future but also so that the experience gained by the school in its pioneering enterprise over the past four years can be of benefit to Khanya. This co-operative interaction bids fair to be an exciting adventure for both parties.

I wish De Hoop Primary School everything of the best in the new phase of its educational existence which began today. I hope that the energy, dedication and commitment of all who have made the new computer centre possible will be amply rewarded in the growth and progress of all the learners who are going to benefit by it.

Enquiries: André Gaum 082-772-6608.

Issued by:
The Communications Directorate
Western Cape Education Department
Private Bag X9114
Cape Town 8000
Tel: (021) 467-2531
Fax: (021) 467-2363
Email: pattwell@pawc.wcape.gov.za
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