The Durban Consulate of the United States of America gives MRP Foundation’s innovative ‘TechEd’ Programme a thumbs up!
The US Consul General for Durban, Frances Chisholm, and her team were recently treated to a tour of the dynamic classrooms of Nyakana Primary School to witness the success of the MRP Foundation’s innovative ‘TechEd’ Project.

THUMBS UP: The MRP Foundation and Nyakana Primary School warmly welcomed guests from the Durban Consulate of the United States of America. From left to right: Claudia Stanfield (MRP Foundation TechEd facilitator); Zama Mazondo; Loveness Xulu; Frances Chisholm (US Consul); Mr Phumulani Matonzi (Principal of Nyakana Combined); Miaokuhle Zungu; Sanele Mthethwa and Creesen Naicker (MRP Foundation)

 

The US Consul General for Durban, Frances Chisholm, and her team were recently treated to a tour of the dynamic classrooms of Nyakana Primary School to witness the success of the MRP Foundation’s innovative ‘TechEd’ Project.

Running in three RedCap Schools in rural KwaDukuza, KwaZulu-Natal, the MRP Foundation’s TechEd Projects aims to bridge the learning divide by inspiring learning through fun technology-based education.

MRP Foundation Programme Manager, Creesen Naicker, introduced the US Consul to the inspiring programme. Creesen has fostered valuable connections with the US over the years, attending the prestigious Washington Mandela Fellowship and collaborating with various *US-based organisations and initiatives for the TechEd programme.

Smiling faces greeted the distinguished US delegation as they entered the Grade R classrooms where the young learners were engaging with the tablets. These tablets have been loaded with advanced educational apps in the key learning areas of literacy, numeracy, creativity and critical thinking for foundation phase learning.

The delegation also stopped in at the computer lab where a high school class was mastering their maths skills using an online learning platform. The cutting edge technology programme focuses on building a solid maths foundation and empowers learners to study at their own pace.

The unique morning visit culminated in the US Consul General delivering an inspiring message that encouraged the older learners to make the most out of this wonderful learning opportunity.

“With privilege comes responsibility and it’s up to you to give back. You must do your best, think your hardest, take school seriously and make your teachers proud,” said Chisholm.

“Encourage your neighbours to do their homework or help your friend in class. You need to decide right now what’s important to you and realise that the choice you make today affects your future.”

The special visit certainly left the learners with a positive energy, something the teachers and the MRP Foundation hopes to see reflected in the results of the Annual National Assessments later this year.

 

*Annexure

RedCap Schools– A holistic education programme in five schools in KwaDukuza focused on improving learner performance.

TechEd– A technology in education programme funded and facilitated by the MRP Foundation.

Global Literacy Project (GLP)- A child-driven learning movement using tablet-based technology to tackle the widespread problem of illiteracy and poor education.

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Media Lab A GLP Platform and Content Development Partner who helped design the GLP Project.

Tufts University Language Centre- As one of thePlatform and Content Development Partners of the GLP Tufts finds and develops the content for the colourful learning apps which the tablets are preloaded with.

Georgia State University Psychology Department- One of thePlatform and Content Development Partner of the GLP.

Breteau Foundation- Part of the literacy component of TechEd the Breteau Foundation aims to bring digital learning platforms to underprivileged school children.

Khan Academy- Khan Academy offers practice exercises, instructional videos, and a personalized learning dashboard that empower learners to study at their own pace in and outside of the classroom. Khan Academy is used as part of the numeracy component of TechEd.

Numeric- Numeric is using Khan Academy to create exciting and high impact learning environments around South Africa.

KA Lite- An offline version of Khan Academy. It is a lightweight solution providing high-quality education by bringing the power of online learning to the offline world. KA Lite is part of the numeracy component of TechEd.

Shepid- IT and Technical Support.

AirBand- A focused wireless broadband company that provides the bandwidth for the TechEd project.

Bodill Education– Independent Maths testing and curriculum consultants.

Next Level Outcomes– The independent research organisation responsible for facilitating the testing and evaluation study on the TechEd Project.

The South African Post Office- Donated funds towards the TechEd Project.