4IR a challenge in education sector

Girl scholars wearing blue uniform
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Educational specialist, Professor Nosisi Feza, says the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) in the educational sector will be a huge challenge.

She says South Africa is still battling to perfect the Third Industrial Revolution, especially in rural schools.

The Department of Basic Education is currently training thousands of teachers in coding, with the subject set to be piloted in 1000 schools across five provinces starting next year.

Feza says the implementation of advanced technology will be a burden on the already over-worked teachers.

“In rural schools, there are a lot of challenges in terms of rolling out … using technology in teaching and learning and also training teachers very well on how to use this technology. I think we need to take a breath as a country and stop trending and focus on who we are and where we are, and develop from where we are, because we are going to make mistakes that are similar to ones that have done in the past,” explains Feza.

The South African Democratic Teachers’ Union (Sadtu), secretary-general Mugwena Maluleka, says they share Feza’s sentiments.

However, he says the Fourth Industrial Revolution in schools is possible if government shows commitment.

“It is going to take a political wave from government and everyone else in ensuring that teachers in the rural areas are also given the support that is necessary for us to be taking advantage of the improvements in terms of technology as brought by the Fourth Industrial Revolution,” adds Maluleka.

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