The 60 million girls Foundation believes that harnessing new technologies is key to achieving global education objectives. Technology provides an additional platform to help more children reach their academic goals by giving them access to learning materials, often hard to come by in remote villages.
We know that there are many barriers to education for children in developing countries, and living in a rural area or a conflict zone is one of them. In these situations, there are fewer schools, a paucity of trained teachers and large class sizes.
Also, as conflict displaces more children, easier access to learning tools is vital to ensuring that they are not left behind. The latest figures from the UNESCO Institute of Statistics show that the number of out-of-school children and adolescents is increasing. Half of all refugees are now children.
We are working with other organizations to find a way to reach marginalized children through a combination of traditional in-class schooling and independent learning with computer-based programs. This is known as blended learning.
Over the last two years, we have partnered with CAUSE Canada in Sierra Leone’s Kabala district to give children access to KA Lite, an offline version of math and science tutorial Khan Academy, run by the Learning Equality Foundation.
We have also worked closely with World Possible, a California-based non-profit. This organization has developed academic content that has been downloaded onto a Raspberry Pi, a small, inexpensive device that can fit in the palm of your hand and which acts as a server for up to 30 devices. We are looking forward to adding more programs to increase the range of learning possibilities.