E-learning For Africa Held Back By Power Shortage

Educational technology
Educational technology is not going to be any use without affordable power.                 

Is  lack of power holding back educational technology in Africa?

There are well-documented problems about access to education. The Africa Learning Barometer at the US-based Center for Universal Education at Brookings says of the continent's nearly 128 million school-aged children, 17 million will never attend school.

There have been improvements, with targets for the millennium development goals widening access to primary school.

But many millions, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa, never start school or learn so little that it is hardly worth them attending.

Against this backdrop, education in Africa, particularly in East Africa, has become a hotbed for e-learning.

Education providers, politicians and entrepreneurs agree on the potential of educational technology as a way to reach out-of-school children and improve the education received by those that are in school.

But how do you power it? What e-learning devices need more than anything are power and connectivity.

This is an area where many parts of Africa continue to fall short. While internet penetration and grid power have become more widespread, especially in urban areas, a chronic shortage of power still affects the continent.

Which way forward? How would the average African child measure up to her peers in other continents where power is not only a necessity but a luxury?

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