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Technology: How Luzira S.S.’s digital register is keeping students in school

By Marvin Ocol

Last year, Luzira Secondary School administration embarked on digitizing all students in the school.

After the digitization process, all students were issued swipe cards.

The card has a passport-size photo, the name of the student, and the fee payment code, among other critical details.

Upon entering the school gate, a student is required to swipe the card on the machine. The machine immediately recognizes the student and sends a text message to their parent or guardian. This notifies the people back home of the time the child reached school. In the evening, a student is required to swipe the card before exiting the school. Again, a text message goes to the parent or guardian, automatically alerting them of the time the child exited school.

“Once a child enters school, they don’t come out. In case of an emergency, it is either the parent or guardian who comes to pick them up,” a source who preferred to speak on the condition of anonymity said.

The school administration declined to interact with us about the progress registered so far. They referred us to the Ministry of Education and Sports.

According to our source, digitization has ensured that students reach school or home within the time expected without loitering along the way. It has also ensured that the students actually reach school because they must log in.

“The parent or guardian knows the time their child left home, and the moment the child reaches school and swipes their card, they get an alert in the form of a text message. This means that a child cannot lie about the time they either left home or school,” a source in a position of authority says.

In fact, the number of learners has increased.

Previously, a source said students would end up dropping out of school given the environment and activities they interacted with between home and school or between school and home.

It is important to note that Luzira S.S. is not far from Portbell (although it is not very active now). The place is a beehive of activity. Just nearby, two markets are operated on Monday and Thursday every week. Near the school gate, there is a bar and other places of entertainment.

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