Caritas Kanizio of Rwanda’s Education MinistryÂ distributed 500 XOs to students and teachers in Ruli Primary school in Muhanga this week. Â This is part of an expansion of Rwanda’s OLPC project to rural schools, which has taken some time to develop but has been in ways the most rewarding part. Â It has helped bridge the connectivity and technology divide within the country.
Rwanda has positioned itself as a tech-savvy hub in East Africa for some time, but rural towns have had very limited access to computers. Â Parents generally hope to learn about computers through their children, and the program is seen as heralding better Internet connectivity for the communities as well.
Nkubito Bakuramutsa, OLPC project coordinator at the Rwandan Education Ministry, talked to the Rwanda New Times this week about the first 10,000 students and teachers who had received laptops through the country’s OLPC program. Rwanda is on track to distribute XOs to 50,000 students by the end of the year, with another 50,000 following soon after.
Laptop preparation in Kigali
The national deployment team recently finished setting up their software build, and is now flashing 2,000 XOs a day. This is a good milestone for the team — learning how to rebuild all parts of the system on their own is important, and as Zehra can attest the first time you get a NANDBlast production line up and running is memorable.