Huawei and UNESCO are ramping up the drive to get more children into formal schooling under the firm’s TECH4ALL initiative. Known as Technology-enabled Open Schools for All, the UNESCO-Huawei project’s impact aims to address the immediate schooling needs of more than 20,000 students and over 1 million teachers in three African countries, including Kenya and Ghana.
The program, outlined in its latest digital inclusion report, is part of the firm’s innovation and exploration on how to use technology to boost the digital transformation of education and improve the digital skills, especially for underserved groups in remote and rural areas.
(TOP: Participants attending the roundtable where Huawei and Unesco made the announcement).
“All of our efforts with the initiative have been possible due to technology and partnerships as key enablers,” said Jeffrey Zhou, President of ICT Marketing for Huawei.
He explained that the concept of open schools was catching on fast globally as the gross enrollment ratio at secondary level is still only about 76 percent and, if universal secondary education is to be achieved, there is a need to go beyond brick-and-mortar solutions.
“Open schooling is an effective response to the rapidly increasing demand for secondary education, both as an end itself and as a route to tertiary education. It can provide skills for employment and entrepreneurship and can be conducted cost-effectively and at scale since it uses open, distance and online methods to scale up access to reach more people,” he noted.
Echoing his remarks, Dr. Fengchun Miao, Chief of Unit for Technology and Artificial Intelligence in Education for UNESCO pointed out that digital open schooling models are the manifestation of the digital transformation of school education.
“It’s an open approach to reinventing schooling systems to ensure school education, including knowledge learning, skills development, the fostering of values, and social caring, will be secured both under normal and emergency situations,” he added.
To date, more than 600 schools, over 220,000 secondary school teachers and particularly students in remote areas, have benefited from the TECH4ALL program.
The TECH4ALL Digital Inclusion special report shares the diverse visions, strategies, and best practices of global experts and partners in 15 stories set out in three sections: Insights, Technology in Focus, and Case Studies.