The Edify EdTech Program: A Typical Day in the Life of an EdTech Facilitator

Do you know what it means to be an EdTech facilitator under the Edify - ITAU partnership? Here is a typical day in the life of Dumba Stephen, one of the pioneer facilitators.

On the 15th of July 2020, I and Rogers Mukalele met in a restaurant at the invitation of Mr. Lugoloobi Godfrey. In this meeting, Godfrey told us about a new NGO called Edify Uganda which was here to among others improve the use of education technology in schools. As members of the ICT Teachers Association, Mr. Lugoloobi was confident that we were the right team to kick start the NGO’s efforts since we were already doing this.

Mr. Lugoloobi Godfrey (In checked shirt), Mukalele Rogers (Center) and Dumba Stephen

That was the beginning of ITAU’s relationship with Edify Uganda and since then hundreds of schools and have been impacted, with a record 128 schools trained in first term 2022 alone, in addition to over 7000 learners taught through elearning and over 1300 teachers trained during the pandemic period 2020/2021.

Rogers Mukalele prepares for the first assignment by Edify Uganda on 22nd July 2020.

In May 2022, Edify once again tasked ITAU to do follow up visits in the 128 schools that were trained in the first quarter. This involved delivering a form to each of those schools to capture the progress made so far and find any detail that needed to be given special attention.

I was among the 10 EdTech facilitators who were chosen to traverse the schools which were found in the districts of Kampala, Mukono, Jinja and Kamuli. This is my story of how my day went.

First stop: St. Joseph Pilot School, Kabowa

At a few minutes to 9:00 am I signaled my boda guy that it was time to set off. I set off from my base in Nabbingo for St. Joseph Pilot School Kabowa. In 30 minutes, I was at the school where I found learners attending an assembly. The headteacher, Mr. Kabuye Robert had to excuse himself to attend to me.

Mr. Kabuye Robert and Dumba stephen in the office of St. Joseph Pilot School Kabowa

We went through ta brief chit chat as he walked me around the school and finally the computer lab where I met Darius, the computer teacher. Primary schools rarely have computer labs but St. Joseph Pilot School is one exception. The 20 user computer lab is used to impact ICT skills to the over 600 learners in this school.

In the computer lab of St. Joseph Pilot School with Tr. Darius

I went back to the head teachers office to pick the survey form I had brought with me since it was time for me to hop on a boda boda for my next school. By now it was 10:00 am.

Next stop: Crested Crane Education Centre, Kawaala.

The from St. Joseph Pilot School to Kawaala was short. My boda guy was yawning every minute, a sign that all was not well. However, I was at Crested Crane Education Centre with in 30 minutes. It was now 10:30 am.

We were ushered into the school by the school secretary who directed us to the director’s office. The director, who introduced herself as Teacher Mother insisted that she could only listen or talk about Edify with only one person – who I unfortunately didn’t even know.

Since my boda guy was hungry I allowed him to have a snack as I engaged the Edify EdTech Integration Officer, Mr. Edwin O’Mario to convince the director that I was on a mission by Edify Uganda. Eventually, I was given audience and had a lot to talk about education technology.

Dumba Stephen with Teacher Mother of Crested Crane Education Centre – Kawaala

The director suggested that for genuine feedback, the headteacher of the school who was part of the recently concluded EdTech trainings be the one to fill in the follow up form. Mr. Obbo Peter, the headteacher was quick to arrive to attend to the form before I left for my next stop in Sonde after Namugongo. By now it was almost half past 11:00 am.

Dumba Stephen with Mr. Obbo Peter of Crested Crane Education Center

Next stop: Sonde Global Junior School

I hopped onto my boda, heading to Sonde Global Junior School. This took us around 30 minutes. It would have been shorter but we fund the Namuongo – Sonde road closed by security, allowing only pedestrian traffic. This was due to the fact that the place was accessible to only pilgrims who were thronging in for Martyrs day.

We found our way around and by a fee minutes just after mid day, we were at the gate of Sonde Global Junior School.

Surprisingly, there was no academic activity at the school. But I was received by the secretary who who asked us to wait for the school’s Director of Studies.

Tusabe Juliet the school secretary, the Director of Studies (Center) and Dumba Stephen

I was taken around the school by the DOS as we had a chat about the Edify programs. By the 12:40 pm I was done and it was time to head to the schools in Mukono area.

…and then we got lost

My target was to finish with one more school before I took a lunch break. We headed for Ntawo off the Kampala – Jinja highway. Like fate has it, we were directed to a totally different school. We ended up at St. Elizabeth Montessori School. We received an extremely warm welcome from the headteacher.

The head teacher asked us what exactly we were doing. This took me some 15 minutes talking about Edify Uganda and the Education Technology program. He seemed so interested that we were forced to spend some extra minutes here. He however hesitantly let us leave for our next stop over.

Signing the visitors book at St. Elizabeth Montessori

Next stop: Lady Elizabeth Nursery and Primary School

I made a call to the administrator of Lady Elizabeth Nursery and Primary School who gave me fresh directions. By now I was hungry and there was a lot of time lost. Since I had made an appointment with all the schools, I was determined to get to all of them.

At Lady Elizabeth Nursery & Primary school, I was received by the school’s headteacher Ms. Muyama Grace who was happy that we were there. She went on to tell us that though she was relatively new here, where she had previously heard about Edify. She tasked one of the teachers to fill in the follow up form which was done perfectly well.

At Lady Elizabeth Nursery & Primary School with the head teacher Ms. Muyama Grace

For fear of getting lost again, I asked her if she knew our next school. Unfortunately, she didn’t. I had to call the next school so that I got clearer directions. With these directions, Ms. Muyama was kind enough to show us the shortest route to the next school.

Next stop: Mountain Climbers Preparatory School

It was now past 2:00 pm and my boda guy was frank enough to alert me that it was time for lunch. I told him he would get something to eat as I rode, which he quickly accepted. I was relieved that this time, I was riding on a less busy yet tarmac road. The last time I was in this area was 2 months ago when I had gone to give an EdTech talk to the staff of Kisowera Secondary School with another EdTech enthusiast, Ayinzabyonna Sheba.

At 2:30 pm I was at Mountain climbers.

The entrance of Mountain Climbers Preparatory School

We were not able to find the headteacher but were helped by Mr. Okello Elias Manuel the school’s Director of Studies. Mr. Okello was glad to tell us how the teachers’s minds were now exposed in connection with education technology. He gladly filled in the form, asked us whether we were fine and whether Edify had plans of coming back.

With the school secretary and Mr. Okello (R) the school DOS

Next stop: Joy & Jolly Nursery & Primary School

It was now time to hit the Mukono Katosi route. We agreed with my boda guy that I would be the one to ride to the rest of the schools so that I gave room for a sober ride from him when returning to base in Nabbingo. My first stop here was Joy and Jolly Nursery & primary School where we met the headteacher Ms. Namayanja Suzan.

The entrance to Joy and Jolly Nursery & Primary School

The headteacher had to leave a class she was attending to. We met in a makeshift office since the school had recently shifted from the old site to a new one. I took her though the form which she filled herself. Like other headteachers, she asked when Edify would come back. We left the Edify EdTech integration officer’s contact with her so that she would get the information from the horse’s mouth.

With Ms. Namayanja Suzan, the head teacher of Joy and Jolly Nursery & Primary school

It was fast approaching 4:00 pm and yet I had 2 more schools on my schedule. My plans were to get through the visits by 5:00 pm and ride back before dark. We left for the next school at around 10 minutes to 4:00 pm.

Next stop: Elasto & Dorah Primary School

Fortunately, this school was a short distance away. The head teacher , Rev. Sempabuka had called earlier to know whether we were on our way. We found him waiting for us and he had a lot of questions for us about Edify. Like before, we informed him that most of the questions were better answered by the office team at Edify.

The entrance of Elasto & Dorah Primary School

In order to save time since we were getting late, the head teacher asked the school secretary to take us around the school and the computer lab as he filled in the follow up form.

In the computer lab of Elasto & Dorah Primary School

Our visit at Elasto & Dorah Primary school lasted almost 40 minutes. The school secretary was kind enough to direct us to Kisoga some distance away, where the last school to visit was found.

Last stop: Helm secondary School

We arrived at Helm Secondary School at a few minutes to 5:00 pm. We found the headteacher, Ms. Nambakire Ruth in a meeting with the non teaching staff of the school. She filled in the administrative section of the follow up form before assigning the computer studies teacher to handle us.

The teacher had to pause his lesson which was in the computer lab in order to complete the follow up form. The teacher in me was resurrected and I stood in for the teacher for the next 20 minutes. I took the kids through drawing shapes in Ms. Word as the teacher duly filled in the follow up form.

I took over the class for the next 20 minutes

I later introduced the ICT Teachers Association to the teacher who had never heard about it. I immediately added him to our WhatsApp groups and told him about the upcoming ICT Teachers technical workshop in July and WordCamp Jinja in September. We exchanged contacts and off we went.

The journey back to Nabbingo

Exhausted, I handed over the ride to my boda guy who acknowledged that indeed the rest was worthwhile. We had a stopover at w’Antoni along at the Mukono Katosi junction to refresh ourselves.

The journey back.

We headed straight for Nabbingo but got a puncture as we approached Kalerwe. This made us lose about 30 minutes of our time. At around 8:00 pm, I was safely in Nabbingo, exhausted but the entire experience was worthwhile.

Thank you Edify Uganda for helping these schools!

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Stephen Dumba is the National Coordinator of the ICT Teachers’ Association of Uganda. Besides teaching ICT, he repairs computers and builds websites. Steve is a speaker and facilitator at tech events and and CEO of senior1.org and a consultant on education technology.

Tel: +256 772 111 223 | +256 752 111 223 | Email: stephen.dumba@gmail.com
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