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November 20, 2019, 4:32 pm

HCM City’s e-textbook program controversial

(09:43:41 AM 24/07/2014)
(Tinmoitruong.vn) - The HCM City Education and Training Department is considering implementing an e-textbook project, under which first, second and third graders in the city would learn with e-textbooks instead of actual books. However, the project remains controversial.

 

The department’s representative said the main purpose is to provide all necessary knowledge on one 8-inch tablet and help lighten the weight of schoolbags on students’ shoulders.

 

According to the Education Publishing House and Intel Group, which provides software in the project, e-books would be developed on 8-inch tablets.

 

The devices not only contain the knowledge necessary for students, but also provide 20 apps useful for students when learning different subjects.

 

The apps to be installed on the devices would allow parents to control the use of the devices to make sure that their children use tablets in the most reasonable way.

 

Every student would go to school with just one tablet instead of a schoolbag with heavy books inside. All the necessary tools necessary for lessons would be included in one tablet.

 

The compilers of the program believe that applying high technology in teaching and learning is a growing trend, and that students in big cities will sooner or later learn with tablets.

 

However, many educators said they are not sure if the e-book program is necessary now.

 

Cao Thi Tuyet Mai, deputy head of the district 4’s education sub-department, has raised many questions about the program.

 

Are electronic devices suitable for students still very young in age? Would e-books partially or totally replace print e-books?

 

She also warned that first, second and third graders are still too young to be able to protect valuable tablets.

 

Meanwhile, Tran Thi Thanh Thuy, deputy head of the district 10’s education sub-department, warned that the use of electronic devices at very young ages would harm students’ eyes.

 

“Many parents complained that interactive whiteboards are not good for students’ eyesight. I wonder if tablets would be safe also?” she questioned.

 

Who will pay for the program?

 

HCM City, which is viewed as a prosperous city with a big budget, has been pioneering many education reform programs, believing that its residents should be given best services and their children the most favorable schooling conditions.

 

However, many residents have described the program as “too ambitious”, saying that the program might not be feasible because of the cost.

 

Nguyen Thi Hong Yen, Deputy Headmaster of Dinh Tien Hoang Primary School, said it would be very difficult to buy enough tablets for the 1,000 first, second and third graders of the school.

 

The headmasters of the schools in the suburbs said that the program cannot be implemented at their schools, where parents have lower income levels.

 

Meanwhile, Tran Trong Khiem, deputy head of the Tan Phu district’s education sub-department, believes that e-books can serve as a supporting teaching aid, and should not replace traditional printed books.

Mai Thanh
Tags: e-textbook, HCMC,
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