DigiSchool pilot: Uganda
Student using DigiSchool solar powered laptop kit in a classroom
The DigiSchool, also known as the MobiStation, is a portable, solar-powered multimedia kit fully equipped with a Ubuntu-powered laptop with local storage, speaker, digital projector, and a document reading camera. DigiSchool, an abridged form of “digital school in a box,” refers to devices with pre-uploaded education content. At a glance, the DigiSchool looks like an ordinary plastic suitcase with wheels and a pullout handle. But inside this black pelican case, you can find video clips, cartoons, music videos, math lessons, an offline Wikipedia, and much more.
English Language textbooks for Grades Four (4) and Six (6) are adapted and produced in three formats: audio materials for children with low vision and/or who are blind, large text HTML and enhanced graphic materials for children with low vision, and sign language materials for children who are deaf.
In a classroom setting, teachers projected sign language content for all children in the class to see and learn, fostering a more inclusive learning environment. In addition, Teachers’ Guides were also developed and piloted in 20 inclusive/integrated schools.
Enablers / Barriers:
This solution bridges the last mile by bringing accessible multimedia educational materials into the classroom to facilitate learning. The solution is also locally produced within Uganda, which led to increased technical capacity and sustainability in the country.
Child participation in ECD (Early Childhood Development) classes has greatly increased with the introduction of the DigiSchool, but it is too early to observe improved learning outcomes: more time is needed to see if and how the DigiSchool affects learning outcomes as well.
On the other hand, in many of the schools targeted by this innovative solution, there was no or intermittent power and no or low connectivity, which limited the usability of the DigiSchool kit.
UNICEF and UNESCO, Ministry of Education and Sports (MoES); Funding: UNPRPD
Video, Ubuntu, Kolibri, Projector
Sign Language, Solar Powered, Low-Cost, Last Mile, Offline, Projector, Camera, OCR (Optical Character Recognition)
https://www.accessibletextbooksforall.org/stories/uganda-pilot, Esther Akwii