KAMPALA — Innovative learning solutions have swelled in popularity since early last year following the outbreak of the COVID19 global pandemic. Among these innovative solutions, digital learning is speedily finding its way to the remote areas of Mayuge District in eastern Uganda.
Since last year, Teach For Uganda has been experimenting with the use of digital learning solutions to accelerate the learning outcomes in rural and underserved UPE schools in Mayuge District when schools closed amidst the pandemic
In March, the State Minister for Primary Education Rosemary Seninde officially launched Teach For Uganda’s first digital learning site at Isenda Primary School in Mayuge describing it as a model for 21st-century schooling.
Recently, MP Bunya South Constituency Hon. Ntende Robert addressed his constituents at an event where the organization scaled its digital learning program to its other four partner schools in the same district.
“I believe this initiative will benefit our children who were left out due to the effects of the pandemic on education. I urge the community, the parents, and the school leaders to work together and make sure this program flourishes in the school,” Hon. Ntende said.
The digitization program in rural Ugandan schools is supported by Student Change Makers who were recently recognized by Fast Company as one of the World-Changing Ideas of 2021.
What started as a simple idea by the Student Change Makers in the US to send tablets to rural village schools in Uganda during COVID has turned into a transformative initiative impacting thousands of Ugandan kids and their families by bringing them digital learning hotspots and solar-powered electricity.
“The digital learning initiative is here to accelerate the life and learning outcomes of children in these Universal Primary Education (UPE) schools and also galvanize the community to support the learning of their children so that all can have a better future,” Teach For Uganda Executive Director Kassaga James Arinaitwe said.
So far, the school project has been a breakthrough with unintended outcomes. The electricity from the solar panels and digital learning hotspots are available to all the community and not just the school kids. Villagers can come to the school and recharge their mobile phones and use the school as a place to meet and exchange information. For some, this is the first time their villages have had lights.
Teach For Uganda hopes to scale this program to 10 of its 25 partner schools in Mayuge District in 2021.