Pandemic 2020 Challenge

 

 

PROBLEM

“Over 80% Of Students In Kenya Have Not Had Access To Online Education”

The COVID-19 pandemic took the world by surprise. Globally, everything has stopped. Projects have been delayed, workplaces closed and schools shut down. The world seems to have ground to a halt because of the novel coronavirus.

However, students continue their education through online learning and via video calls with their teachers, especially in private schools. The model is currently the best alternative as keeping schools open poses a safety risk for students.

So what exactly is the root problem – we explore this through our 3 part ‘Why’s’ to uncover much more.

1. Why did the Kenyan government not partner with local businesses within the private sector to solve the problem?

As we all know there is only so much the government can do to solve the continuous needs of the masses and more often than not businesses within the private sector have creative and innovative solutions to the ever changing needs.

2. Why is it educational programs the responsibility to solve this issue is being left to educational programs alone?

Educational programs within different schools have been challenged with tackling a problem that is beyond their area of expertise frankly speaking. Integrating technology with the current curriculum is an effort that simply cannot be tackled with the existing knowledge educational programs have been using for the past couple of decades.

3. Why do parents have to 100% really on the government to solve the problems affecting their children Parents have the greatest burden of ensuring their children continue pursuing their respective goals and ambitions. Parents should have the option of having a second
option – whether that is access to mass education via a radio channel or Television Station.

When the first COVID-19 case was announced in Kenya March 12th 2020, the country was in a panic. The President of Kenya announced later on that all schools- both secondary and primary were to be closed. However, many schools were not ready to apply home learning programs yet, apart from good universities. This is due to a lack of preparation in this country.

Exploring the solution to this timely subject through a two part – What-If allowed us to objectively come up with critical to focus on:

1. What If we set up a national online learning platform

This can be addressed by providing learners with free access to online platforms and providing users with extra internet free bundles to compensate for increased internet usage. Partnership with the ministry of communication and education can be made to facilitate access to services and increase the speed of the internet. To ease the disruption, Kenya can create a hotline for teachers and students to seek technical support if they face any difficulties.

2. What If we set up a Radio Based Learning

Radio is one of the cheapest and most accessible means of communication across Kenyan households. Providing learning based programs via radio channels will allow the students to continue with their learning while staying safe at home.

It is an opportunity for countries in the region to rethink education. More so, it is a call for building a more resilient and inclusive education system taking into consideration the critical role of teachers, parents, and availability of learning resources.