Mentoring and Observation visit in Mpango- Siavonga
iSchool Impacts more lives, Partners up with Zayo Hub
iSchool Zambia has partnered up with Zayo Hub on a project that aims to achieve transformational change in remote rural areas in Zambia, this will include:
· Provision of solar power, telecom and internet connectivity, and digital content for schools, health and community interest;
· Outreach to support the uptake of new opportunities, focusing on entrepreneurship, primary education, rural livelihoods and women’s inclusion
iSchool Zambia will be providing curriculum-aligned teaching and learning resources, assessment tools, devices and hardware, as well as continued training and mentoring for teachers through the Mwabu Academy.
Mwabu Academy’s training courses and on-going mentoring support build teachers’ capacity to use these innovative teaching methods, and enable all learners, even those in large classes, to progress through being actively engaged and focused.
Justin Reilly, CEO, Mwabu Group Limited (Parent company to iSchool Zambia), “The Zayo Hub Project is an opportunity for Mwabu to show how EdTech and digital education plays a pivotal role in community-based projects. We provide one example (and not the only example) of why basic infrastructure can lead to improved life chances for not just children in rural Africa, but parents and leaders as well. Our unique focus on improving teaching and learning by delivering high quality and contextually relevant eLearning, with world class professional development and assessment enables us to work closely with local officials to track attainment and curriculum coverage. We are very excited to be able to work alongside the Zayo Hub team and local stakeholders.”
The Zayo Hub project is expected to have significant social and economical impact, benefitting children, adolescents, women and men. Project impact is expected to contribute to the achievement of nine sustainable development goals.
The combination of training, education content and support services, power and connectivity will create a value chain sufficient to support local delivery in the beginning and overall costs of delivery in the longer term.
Charlotte Scott, Director Research and Policy, Mwabu Group Limited (Parent Company to iSchool Zambia) “The benefits of bringing digital content to schools is dependent on ensuring sufficient power brings up huge additional possibilities created by having connectivity. So... once we have the power, the connectivity and the content, why not go further than the primary school? reach out to parents and indeed the whole community? we believe that reaching the whole community will create a really supportive environment for our children in schools."
Rural Communities in Zambia and elsewhere greatly welcome Mobile phone coverage. The positive effects of providing access to telecommunications have been well documented for some time. The Zayo Hub project aims to build out from this, providing access to a broader range of related and supported services, and through this supporting improved social and economical development outcome in impoverished communities.
The Zambia Information and Communications Technology Authority (ZICTA) has partnered with iSchool Zambia in a project that aims to empower 73 schools through the supply and installation of digital content on 1,460 computers and training of 146 teachers.
The project is funded by ZICTA under the Universal Access and Service Fund (UASF) and is targeting 160 schools across the country out of which 73 are primary. This is in the Authority’s efforts to promote access to ICTs for all as well as ensuring inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all as outlined in the United Nations (UN)’s Sustainable Development Goal number four (4).
The project is aimed at enhancing the quality of teaching and learning in schools by enabling access to Information and Communication Technology (ICT) resources. iSchool Zambia will be providing curriculum-aligned lesson plans, digital content and assessment tools, as well as continued training and mentoring for teachers and school leaders.
iSchool Zambia has a proven track record in project management through the delivery of digital content, technical support, training, mentoring and observation now deployed to more than 9,300 teachers and 35,000 devices across the country.
iSchool offers a full ecosystem of educational products and services in the Zambian market that includes curriculum-aligned content and lesson plans for Grade 1 – 7 in 8 local languages, assessments, data harvesting and analytics that aims to deliver impactful change for teachers and learners.
Davison Kapakyulu, Country Manager, iSchool Zambia “It is very important to bring together key stakeholders related to use of ICT in education in this case MoGE’s ICT department, iSchool Zambia and ZICTA’s agenda and create opportunities for partnerships. All of us in the technology/education industry and the ecosystem welcome the efforts all parties are putting in to ensure the Zambian learners adopt the use of technology at a tender age. Zambia is already a leading light in Africa for this progress in ICT infrastructure, ICT ecosystem and e-learning as evidenced by the setting up of the Smart Zambia Institute which has expressed interest in partnering with iSchool Zambia on the eLearning component. As iSchool we have built on this by coming up with a product that brings social and economic benefits to our learners and teachers not only in Zambia but to Africa in entirety. We look forward to partnering with more organizations that support inclusiveness for all regardless of one’s social status in society in the use of ICT in education.”
Project schools were strategically selected based on connection to the power grid or any other sources of power with secure infrastructure that would ensure the safety of the ICT equipment.
All schools were accorded an opportunity to apply stating clearly whether they met the selection criteria that was put forward by the Ministry of General Education. The selected schools were later scrutinized by ZICTA to ensure that all schools had all the facilities in place and a team to manage the programme.
This programme provides an opportunity for iSchool to be a part of a project that will empower many lives through ICT and digital education.