SINGAPORE – Pre-schoolers may soon be able to mark their own attendance with tablet computers – using new technology designed to slash the time spent on administration. The cloud-based service could also allow teachers to use thermometers linked to a computer to register and monitor pupils’ temperatures. About 200 pre-schools are expected to adopt the initiative, which was launched last Thursday by the Infocomm Development Authority (IDA).
Each will pay about $200 a year for the technology, which can reduce the time spent on daily administration by about 70 per cent. The system uses cloud computing, which means that it is delivered through the Internet. This reduces upfront costs and the need for an in-house information technology team. Known as software-as-a-service, it will also be useful to other industries, including real estate, travel and retail.
Thirteen technology vendors have won contracts with the IDA to help buyers customise it for their individual needs. The initiative was announced last Thursday by Dr Yaacob Ibrahim, Minister for Communications and Information. Businesses looking to adopt it will have up to 70 per cent of subscription and training costs subsidised for two years.
They will be able to achieve a “significant increase in productivity through the reduction of man-hours required and more streamlined business processes”, said Dr Yaacob.
PAP Community Foundation kindergartens are already using similar systems. “All this will reduce the administrative workload,” said Mr Lim Ee Tuo, deputy director of kindergarten and teacher registration at the Early Childhood Development Agency.
Speaking at a conference hall at Gardens by the Bay, Dr Yaacob said: “We must remember the critical role that infocomm services play and our role in putting in place relevant policies that will ensure that Singaporeans continue to benefit from technological advancements that will make living, working and playing a seamlessly enriching experience for all.”