The Future of Africa’s Education is in EdTech
Africa is constantly working to achieve higher quality education. In fact, money spent on education is set to reach $640 billion by 2030, from $224 billion in 2021. A big reason for the rise of education is also a rise in technology — from the availability of mobile phones to the number of EdTech companies that are introducing innovations. Because of this, EdTech is also expected to skyrocket, projected to reach $57 billion by 2030.
For international EdTech companies that are looking to enter the African market, like Russia’s K-Platform, Kenya can serve as a gateway. Known as Silicon Savannah, this region is one of the most technologically advanced places in Africa. Kenya also houses various EdTech startups, such as Craydel and M-Shule. However, there are also a number of other EdTech companies throughout Africa that are pushing to make high-quality education accessible to more people. Below are some of them:
Pan-African Tech Foundation
The Pan-African Tech Foundation, or PATF, is an organization that aims to increase the mass adoption of technologies in Africa by educating the youth. Recently, they partnered with Input Output Global, or IOG, a tech company best known for engineering and research in blockchain. Together, they plan to partner with tech universities and hubs in Ghana to select 80 students for a course they’ll be teaching. Their students will learn the Haskell programming language — which is a precise and secure programming language used in industries where high accuracy is required, such as in aerospace, defense, and finance.
Ghana is moving to digitize the economy, and the Bank of Ghana is also working towards a blockchain-based digital currency. Those who finish the course will have the skills to assist in this change. This is thanks to their training in building smart contracts that are being heavily used in financial technology. In addition to this, the best students will be offered job opportunities at IOG.
Bridge International Academies
Bridge International Academies has a number of schools in Nigeria. It leverages technologies that are designed to use low amounts of data. They also have resources that are easily available to students since they can be accessed through platforms that are already integrated into the school management and engagement system. This makes them suitable for low infrastructure and limited connectivity environments. Some of the free resources Bridge International offers are mobile interactive quizzes, audio lessons, and virtual classrooms.
The effort to make education more accessible to underprivileged children has resulted in various accomplishments — which are shown on Bridge International’s Facebook page. For instance, students from Bridge Nigeria scored 37% more than the national merit rate in 2021’s end of primary school Common Entrance Exams. This means more students have gained the opportunity to be admitted into top unity schools through merit.
Ambani Africa is an interactive African-language-based early childhood EdTech — and the winner of 2021’s I’M IN Accelerator, which is a program that helps startups grow. Creator Mukundi Lambani talks about the Ambani Africa app, saying it was made to solve the gap in easily accessible digital resources for African language learning. This is especially useful for young students who are taught English in schools despite coming from African households. Ambani Africa helps young African learners phase learn African languages. The app is learner-centered, using games to practice.
Having won the cash prize from the program, Lambani plans to use it to improve its web gaming platform and free gaming app. The funds will also help her team strengthen internal capabilities to get more funding and reach milestones that can help Ambani Africa be recognized internationally.