CAMBRIDGE, Mass.--(The One Laptop per Child Foundation (OLPC), a nonprofit organization whose mission is to help provide every child in the world access to a modern education, has just delivered 774 XO laptop computers to students and teachers of the Zarghona Ana middle school in Kandahar, Afghanistan. To date, OLPC has distributed more than 3,700 XOs in Afghanistan and more than 1.4 million units worldwide.)--
“The main goal of this project is to improve the teaching and learning environment in the school while giving students the opportunity to further their education experience at home using the XO laptops”
Under the leadership of Afghanistan’s Ministry of Education, the Kandahar project brings together a unique partnership with One Laptop per Child; USAID/Afghanistan Small and Medium Enterprise Development (ASMED); the Ministry of Communication and Information Technology; Roshan, Afghanistan’s leading telecommunications provider; and PAIWASTOON, a local private IT company.
“The main goal of this project is to improve the teaching and learning environment in the school while giving students the opportunity to further their education experience at home using the XO laptops,” said Farooq Wardak, Minister of Education of Afghanistan. “Children having access to this type of tool can further their education and allow them to be actively engaged in their own study. They learn, share, create and have the opportunity to collaborate with their fellow students. They become connected to each other, to the world, and to a brighter future.”
Commenting on the project, Nicholas Negroponte, founder and chairman of One Laptop per Child, said, “The XO laptops will empower a new generation of Afghan citizens to connect with the world, think critically and challenge indoctrinations of intolerance. This is an important development for both the people of Afghanistan and for the world.”
Already translated into Dari and Pashto, the XO laptops will provide access to a digital library with thousands of pages of content. Students will also benefit from having access to 150 educational mini games and interactive versions of curriculum content providing guidance and feedback on self-study exercises. Because the children will be able to bring the laptops home, girls, in particular, will be able to learn in the safety of their own homes and without fear of reprisal for going to school.
The XO laptop, specially designed for rugged environments, is well-suited to the Afghan environment. The XO uses three times less electricity than other laptops and is built in a sealed dust-free system.
About the One Laptop per Child Foundation
The One Laptop per Child Foundation (OLPC at http://www.laptop.org) is a non-profit organization created by Nicholas Negroponte and others from the MIT Media Lab to design, manufacture and distribute laptop computers that are inexpensive enough to provide every child in the world access to knowledge and modern forms of education.
About the Afghanistan Ministry of Education and Ministry of Communications and Information Technology
The Ministry of Education and Ministry of Communications and Information Technology of Afghanistan are the government institutions tasked with improving education and the information technology sectors. They work to collectively embed communication technology and standardize technology in the education sectors and establish platforms to transform society and government institutions to an information-based society and governance.