April 10, 2015
IDP Foundation, Inc. and the IDP Rising Schools Program (IDPRS) are pleased to announce a new partnership with Eneza Education; a virtual tutor and teacher assistant accessible on low-cost basic mobile phones. Started by Toni Maraviglia, a Teach for America corps member and former New York teacher, and Kago Kagichiri, a Kenyan developer, Eneza was created to give students access to information that will improve their intelligence and general knowledge. Designed as a way to engage students outside of traditional rote learning, the Eneza product increases critical thinking and inspires curiosity.
After meeting Toni at the Unreasonable Institute in Colorado, IDPF President, Irene Pritzker, knew that the product was something that could contribute exponentially to the educational landscape in Ghana, and thus talks began. What was discussed was an exploration into bringing a new technology to the low cost private schools already enrolled in the IDPRS program, and a strong focus on helping the JHS students pass their Basic Education Certification Exams (BECEs); which allow students to enter into secondary school.
In February of this year, the two teams met in Accra for a very successful scoping trip, as a way to begin formulating a more solid project framework. Over the course of two weeks, the teams met with proprietors in ten different schools in both the Kumasi and Accra regions, which also included demonstrations of the product to teachers, students, and parents. Meetings were also had with mobile network providers and potential local partners who could serve as resident implementers.
As a result of the trip and the conversations had, it was decided that the IDP Foundation, Inc. would make a program related investment for the creation of JHS 3 content, consisting of 50 mini lessons, quizzes, and answer explanations for a pilot that is set to begin at the start of the academic year in September. The content is to be developed by teachers certified by the Ghanaian Education Service to construct curriculum, and it will be vetted by head teachers to assure accuracy. Additionally, the incorporation of teacher content will be included, with tips on classroom management, student engagement, discipline, and even lesson planning.
Because Eneza’s mission is to make 50 million kids across rural Africa smarter, the cost of the product is extremely low, hovering at about $0.50 a month for unlimited use, which is one of the most affordable supplemental education tools our team has ever come across. They are committed to the quality of their product and will partner with a local organization in Ghana to secure the project’s sustainability.
Stay tuned for updates on this exciting new project!