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Women’s involvement accelerates digital learning access to 250,000 learners in Kenya

Irene Muthoni Mahugu

This month, we celebrate the work of the remarkable women who have played an instrumental role in the adoption of digital learning technologies in Kenya

Women in Kenya, like in many parts of the world, have historically faced barriers to accessing education and technology, but their resilience, determination, and vision are propelling them to the forefront of a revolution in digital learning technologies, which will forever transform the country’s education system.

Indeed, women are increasingly leading remarkable work in educational institutions, edtech organisations, the government and community organisations. These women are now pioneering innovative approaches to learning and empowerment, charting new paths towards progress and inclusivity.

EIDU, a digital learning partner of the government, is on a remarkable journey catalysed by the contributions of women within the administration, educational institutions, the EIDU team and beyond. EIDU now works with 11 county governments, and counting, to deliver cost-effective and scalable digital learning solutions to 250,000 learners and 10,000 teachers through a digital learning program.  

Reflecting on the central role of women within the organisation, EIDU’s Head of Government Relations, Salome Mwaura, said, “We owe much of our success to the exceptional women professionals in our midst, whose wealth of experience has propelled us to achieve significant milestones in record time.” 

Across various spheres of engagement, the enthusiasm and acumen of women leaders have expedited the progress in the adoption of digital learning technologies. In Bungoma County, for instance, Deputy Governor H.E. Janepher Mbatiany swiftly recognized the potential of EIDU’s solutions and spearheaded its swift integration into the local educational framework.

“We know the world is going digital, and, as a county, we don’t want to be left behind; It (EIDU) is a good program and I am sure the lives of our children will change from a tender age,” she said in February during the rollout of EIDU’s program across 36 early-childhood development education (ECDE) centres with 3,233 learners.

Meanwhile, educators, serving as the frontline agents of interaction between students and educational tools, continue to play a pivotal role in the successful implementation of digital learning initiatives within their respective levels of influence.

Irene Muthoni Mahugu, a teacher at Iveche Primary School in Embu County, and one of the 170,760 women teachers employed by the Kenyan government, attests to the transformative impact of digital learning on her pedagogical practice, citing its efficacy in streamlining her teaching methods, and accelerating her students’ learning trajectories.

“It has helped my learners acquire early digital literacy skills and is a big boost to the learners’ future, especially now that the world is going the digital way,” she said, adding, “Our lessons in class are more organised because there is a structure that one follows, with a step-by-step direction on how to do things. In fact, today, I feel like I am CBC compliant.”

Ms. Mahugu’s sentiment is corroborated by compelling data indicating that students participating in EIDU’s digital learning programme exhibit accelerated learning outcomes, gaining an additional 0.8 years of academic progress for each year of learning.

As part of its support to governments, EIDU supplies to schools devices equipped with learning content that adapts to each learner’s pace. The content is sourced from the world’s best educational material providers, with EIDU ensuring that it aligns with the requirements of the Kenyan Government’s Competency-based Curriculum (CBC), and is approved by the Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD). 

The work and influence of the aforementioned women goes a long way in helping better the quality of education for girls, especially those in the marginalised communities, who have to overcome major hurdles to stay in school.

Also Read: Visa announces strategic collaboration with TECH5 to Advance Digital Government Ecosystems

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