Kenya’s e-Learning Centre to implement COMESA’s e-Learning programme

The Kenya eLearning Centre (KeLC) has been selected to lead the implementation of the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa’s (COMESA) eLearning programme.
KeLC’s nomination follows an undertaking by the Kenya government and COMESA Secretariat undertaken to collaborate at the fifth meeting of the COMESA Committee on Information Technology (ICT) in Seychelles on March 24 to 27 2009.
The meeting recommended that COMESA Secretariat should enter into a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Kenya government to lead in development and implementation of the COMESA e-Learning program, with the recommendation being fully endorsed by the high-level meeting of the COMESA Council of Ministers in November 2009.
Speaking at the recent eLearning Eastern Africa conference in Nairobi, Andrew Gakiria, the KeLC coordinator, said the programme is in line with the COMESA regional capacity building programme which seeks to build new skills for the new knowledge age through use of new methodologies or e-Learning.
“The COMESA eLearning programme aims to develop and strengthen institutional capacity in the critical skill areas necessary for effective and sustainable e-Government implementation in the COMESA region,” said Gakiria.
The programme, which is ongoing but set for formal launch mid this month in Nairobi, involves the training of technical experts from 19 COMESA states in e-Learning development and implementation – Learning Management Systems (LMS), e-Content development, online tutoring, workshop facilitation, e-Learning project management.
It also implements a programme to support partner states to develop, implement and successfully manage e-Learning programmes for technical capacity building through National e-Learning centres.
“It identifies and supports e-Learning champions in partner states to further promote e-Learning development and implementation in the COMESA region and identifies strategic institutions in key sectors in member states to be upgraded into regional e-Learning hubs to support implementation of the COMESA e-Learning program,” said Gakiria, adding that it will also develop the COMESA e-Learning platform into a comprehensive online training portal for delivery of regional training programs in a blended approach.
“COMESA e-learning programme committee, composed of representatives from COMESA member states, has already established and acts as the national e-Learning focal points. The technical support programme has been put in place to support establishment and development of national e-Learning centres within COMESA and is modeled along the KeLC model,” said Gakiria.
KeLC, was established as a national platform to empower stakeholder institutions on the adoption and use of e-learning in line with the Kenya national development objectives as spelt out in ‘Vision 2030’ and the UN Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
KeLC was formed in due to the need for a coordinating mechanism for e-Learning promotion and development in the public sector.
As a coordinating mechanism, KeLC builds synergies between stakeholders to promote consensus and collaboration on issues of concern in e-Learning in order to improve efficiency and effectiveness of service delivery in the public sector.
Some of KeLC’s partners include United Nations Environment Progtramme (UNEP), World Bank Institute and InWEnt for which it acts as the strategic implementation partner for InWEnt’s regional capacity building program on e-Learning in Africa
Up to now, KeLC has trained over 600 technical staff from over 10 African countries, 30 per cent of who have gone through alumni support programme for further assistance to develop, manage or implement e-learning projects.

An e-learning session in progress.