In Kenya: Quality education even low income families can afford
In Kenya, primary school starts at the age of six and runs for eight years, and while the public schools are free to all children, they often suffer from limited resources.
OPIC recently agreed to support a business that is providing an affordable education alternative to thousands of Kenyan families through a series of 237 schools it is building throughout the country. Each school will provide a standardized curriculum at a cost of less than $6 per month per student, a model designed to be both sustainable and affordable. Earlier this year, OPIC agreed to provide a $10 million loan to Bridge International Academies, which expects its schools will educate an estimated 300,000 children by 2022.
Bridge International, which has already opened schools in several locations in Africa, has integrated teacher use of tablet computers into the program to ensure a standardized curriculum. In addition to providing the schools teachers with lessons, the tablet maintains student grades and notes when the teacher arrives or leaves the school, and how long she spends on each lesson.
In addition to the obvious benefit of educating so many low income students, the Bridge project is also expected to have a positive impact in other ways and is projected to create more than 12,000 local jobs in Kenya.