Colombia’s President Santos on quadrupling Internet access nationwide, and on rural OLPC success

Last November, President Juan Manuel Santos of Colombia gave the annual speech presenting the country’s National Competitiveness Report (pdf) – presented by the national Private Council for Competitiveness.

In his speech, he spends some time discussing his national plans for education, and recalls one of the great OLPC stories — the first OLPC program in Colombia in 2008, involving delivery by helicopter, no less, when Santos was Minister of National Defense. This took place in the town of Vista Hermosa, which at the time had recently been captured by government forces from the FARC.

Vista Hermosa students receive XOs in Dec. 2008

Here is the story in his own words. It is worth watching the original video; Santos is a good speaker. (The whole talk is fascinating; education starts at 26:25, the Vista Hermosa story is at 28:55.)

Excerpts after the jump. Continue reading Colombia’s President Santos on quadrupling Internet access nationwide, and on rural OLPC success

Turbana and Fundauniban support OLPC in Colombia

Fundauniban, the social foundation of Turbana Corporation, recently launched an OLPC project for 8 rural schools in Uraba, Colombia. The program was launched at the Uniban Institute library with 800 XOs.

CEO Juan David Alarcon said in announcing the program, “education and personal growth [are] the key for the development of the region, and there is no better place to start than empowering children to take an active role in their education and future.”

Non-flash version here.

 

XOs in Colombia: Caldas, Itagüí, and wonderful tools

Tech Crunch TV interviewed Maureen Orth recently on the introduction of OLPC in rural Colombia on their tl:dw videocast.

This was a timely reminder that Colombia has been building a network of supporting pilots and foundations in the years since this first urban school began implementing OLPC.  The largest projects are in Medellín (perlas), in Caldas, in Altos de Cazucá, and in Itagüí (1, 2).  Some of these are much more rural, and required helicopter drops to get them underway.

Caldas also produced this great video.

Children relaxing outside of class at the Marina Orth school
Children relaxing outside of class at the Marina Orth school

The Maureen Orth  Foundation‘s Medellin pilot is not very large, but she talks about connected laptops as “the most wonderful tool they could possible have”.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DSXraxq43mU&feature=player_embedded