Digital tech programme improves education landscape

TANZANIA: VODACOM Tanzania Foundation is committed to support the government in creating a conducive learning environment by providing educational institutions with the necessary resources.

According to information from the Vodacom Tanzania Foundation, the e-Fahamu programme has reached about 252 public schools countrywide, most of which are in rural areas.

So far, Vodacom Tanzania Foundation has allocated over 2bn/- towards the development of the e-Fahamu platform since its inception to provide access to digital learning materials and resources in schools in the country.

Through the programme, more than 215,000 students and 15,000 teachers have been reached with access to the educational content in the e-Fahamu portal.

“Most of the programmes align with the Tanzania Development Vision 2025, focusing on education, health and climate,” the Company’s information stated.

This initiative has not only transformed the academic landscape but has also catalysed a remarkable 2.4 per cent average increase in academic performance across 252 schools spanning diverse regions in the country.

The programme provides digital tools and content including computers, routers, tablets, free internet connectivity, and classroom furniture to support seamless learning through the e-Fahamu website, ensuring accessibility for both students and teachers.

Elisha Lazaro, a student at Mgama Secondary School in the Iringa Region said, “As a result of this programme I can now use a computer to access learning materials and use the internet through the e-Fahamu website.”

He adds that the educational materials they can now access via the e-fahamu portal include past exams, practical content, pamphlets, and other value-adding content.

The e-Fahamu programme addresses convenience and access to learning materials for students.

This improvement is particularly significant because it responds to the need for study materials, where through its virtual library students no longer worry about sharing the limited books available to them.

“The e-Fahamu simplifies the process of accessing learning materials for me, especially considering the shortage of books in our school library. With this programme you can select the materials you need without the hassle of having to share them with others,” said Mashindike James, a student at Lupanga Practicing Secondary School in the Morogoro Region.

In addition to improving academic performance, equipping public schools with computer laboratories has increased student attendance.

The presence of computer facilities serves as a motivating factor for students, as they are eager to utilise computers and enjoy continuous access to data-free internet.

This combination of technological resources not only enhances learning opportunities but also fosters a positive environment that encourages students to actively engage in their education.

“The introduction of this programme has significantly reduced student absenteeism. It has motivated students to attend classes because they can access computers to access the learning materials they need,” said Godrivian Mgalla, a teacher at Lupanga Practicing Secondary School in the Morogoro Region.

Internationally, the Foundation has contributed to Sustainable Development Goal No. 4 (Quality Education) by promoting access to digital technology and easy access to educational materials for students and teachers in Tanzania.

This move has boosted teaching and learning outcomes as well as increased academic performance for both male and female students in schools.

In Tanzania, the Vodacom Tanzania Foundation’s e-Fahamu programme stands as a beacon of educational empowerment, offering students access to digital learning.

Mobile connectivity remains pivotal in driving digital innovation worldwide. By the end of 2023, 5.6 billion people (69 per cent of the global population) subscribed to a mobile service, representing an increase of 1.6 billion people since 2015.

This is according to the Mobile Economy 2024 Report which is annually produced by GSMA Intelligence.

At the end of 2023, 58 per cent of the world’s population used mobile internet, equating to 4.7 billion users an increase of 2.1 billion since 2015.

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