More than 20 state education ministers from across Africa convened last week in Gaborone, Botswana hosted by the Botswana Ministry of Basic Education and AU Innovating Education in Africa Expo.
NGWANA ENTERPRISES picked up points that resonated with the current digital education transformation in Africa- and those echoed by Rwanda Education Minister of State Dr. Isaac MUNYAKAZI.
What he advised to the African leadership on education: “This combination of business acumen, technological awareness and pedagogical expertise is unlikely to be found in one person- African need to support solutions by diverse pool of their own HOMEGROWN SOLUTIONS AND EXPERTISE, AND MINDSET.
The opportunity for collaboration across country, regional and continental educational offices to create the necessary capacity is clear and in four ways;
- NEW SKILLS FOR NEW TECHNOLOGIES- prior to implementation, skills gaps appear, which need to be plugged if technology is to reach its potential. The ones we are teaching learners in Rwanda include: entrepreneurship, coding skills, digital skills, leadership and project management skills etc
- ALIGNMENT WITH LOCAL AND GLOBAL AGENDAS- One way to maximise the reach and the impact of ICT for learning is to appeal to, and align with, existing education policy agendas. Too often, the public narrative that surrounds technology in Africa is focused on infrastructure investments and access to kit, reinforcing the myth that introducing technology into education systems automatically equates to progress… In Rwanda we have invested in 1 laptop per child- and to be able to do this, we have supported the established of a local company that manufactures these laptop (Positive GBH).
- Public/Private Partnerships (PPPs) are seen as a natural model that can harness the potential of technology providers and investors, but also regulate them, ensuring a focus is kept on learning outcomes and equity.
- RWANDA IS MORE OPTIMISTIC/MINDSET , EFFICIENT AND PRACTICAL TO TRANSFORMATION- The people of Rwanda have seen far worse market conditions before, and yet have persevered. Championed from the top presidency by Paul Kagame the digital economy in Rwanda has been endorsed that it can “unlock new pathways for inclusive growth, innovation, job creation, service delivery and poverty reduction”. But optimism isn’t enough given the serious challenges ahead- Rwanda has adopted a mindset that only exists to develop Rwanda as a pioneer. Business leaders must act- local entrepreneurs must be developed and given opportunity. The key is digitalisation and the time to embrace it is now in Rwanda. We welcome all to learn from us.What emerges is a compelling picture of potentially transformative change for many to learn from – and that is the story of Rwanda.