The labour party in government will give a free ‘tablet’ to all schoolchildren in the fourth primary grade, irrespective of the school they attend. All Year IV students in government, private and church schools will be given this ‘tablet’ – a one-piece mobile computer, free of charge.
This was announced this morning by the Labour party leader Joseph Muscat during a press conference he was addressing at the Labour party headquarters together with Evarist Bartolo and Owen Bonnici.
The PL in government launched five proposals in Education. It will launch a national strategy on illiteracy and work towards a solution to the literacy problem as by improving literacy, the country would also be addressing poverty issues.
A new government will increase investment in the public library by restructuring the central library, improving resources and campaigning for more widespread usage.
Evarist Bartolo spoke on the problems facing teachers and heads of schools. A new Labour government will ensure that the Ministry and the Directorate of Education will work hand in hand with teachers and encourage their initiatives in their classroom.
The labour party will also address illiteracy in IT. The proposal to give around 4,000 schoolchildren in the fourth grade, a free ‘tablet’ will be the first initiative and Dr. Muscat said that the government would consider expanding this proposal in the future. The initial cost will be around € 1 .5 million but the private sector will be asked to participate in this scheme.
Evarist Bartolo said that the government has not published the TIMMS and PIRLS report that show that Malta ranks badly both in the International Reading Literacy Study as well as in International Mathematics and Science studies.
Replying to a question on stipends, Labour confirmed that the stipend system will not be altered in any way. Joseph Muscat said that he was a product of the stipend system and a new Labour government will give the same benefits to students.
The Labour leader concluded by saying that the PL will announce further proposals on Education in the coming days.