Kenyatta University, and BRCK, a local technology firm based in Nairobi, have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to promote digital literacy in the country.
The MoU covers among other areas, joint collaboration in the design and development of innovative technological solutions, research, advocacy and stakeholder engagements, content development and training and capacity building.
Speaking after the signing ceremony, KU Vice Chancellor Prof. Olive Mugenda said the partnership will enable the two organisations to leverage technology as an enabler of delivering educational content and impart knowledge, skills, attitudes and values that will have far-reaching changes in the education sector.
“It is a great pleasure to partner with like-minded organisations such as BRCK with whom we have a shared vision and an appreciation of the role that technology can and should play in the overall education process. Both BRCK and KU are at the forefront of developing and rolling out cutting edge digital solutions that will transform the way education is delivered resulting in an enhanced learning environment that offers competitive advantage in the workforce for the young people of Africa and generations to come,” she said.
The partnership will also firmly establish Kenya as a global hub for digital education, by creating a unique centre where deployments of digital learning solutions, teacher training, curriculum design and device design, manufacturing and logistics knowledge gained will come together leading to a 21st century digital education centre.
The two organisations will leverage each other’s strengths to ensure a successful joint venture delivering uncompromised standards and techniques in teaching and learning. Kenyatta University has a dedicated division of research and a very vibrate innovation and incubation centre which has seen the creation of winning start -up companies in the country. The institution also has a very strong digital school which was re-engineered recently.
On the other hand, BRCK has an unrivalled ability and capability to develop innovative connectivity technologies making the two partners a formidable, dynamic, forward-thinking team.
As part of the agreement, Kenyatta University will host the manufacturing and assembly plant which will enable the institution to manufacture more tablets. This will result in the creation of jobs for the youth, technology transfer and will also mitigate depreciation of the exchange rate through local production rather than importing the devices.
“We were the first university in the country to use tablets to deliver content to the students in the digital school. The tablets are very interactive with software that makes teaching easy and interactive. Following our partnership with BRCK, we hope to start a manufacturing plant to make cost effective tablets as well as scale up their use to other schools,” Prof. Mugenda added.
This partnership will create the infrastructure and skills not only for the digital learning but design, build and manufacture a myriad of technologies in future creating indigenous digital solutions for a myriad of applications in education and beyond that will be deployed around the continent.
BRCK Board member Juliana Rotich said: “Education has been identified as the common thread that will shape a sustainable future for economies around the globe and digital technology is one of the tools that will provide a leg-up to this new mode of learning. Through this joint venture, we aim to overcome barriers in the sector and offer constructive value through content, connectivity and functionality.”