2015 was a pivotal year in global education. Now, as we begin 2016 you're invited to look back at the ten most popular CEI blog posts from the last 12 months.
The list shows which issues resonated most among our community in 2015. And while no one yet knows exactly what 2016 will bring to the education landscape, it seems likely that many of these issues will remain significant - through 2016 and beyond.
In August, Michelle Matthews reported on the growing importance of corporate social investment in South Africa. Private firms in the country are increasingly recognizing the economic benefits to be gained from investments in education, and Matthews examines some of the innovative strategies being used in the country, with implications for other nations and contexts as well.
In his summertime trip to the region, President Obama spoke at the United Nations compound in Nairobi, Kenya to an audience of business innovators at the Global Entrepreneurship Summit. CEI marked his speech by showcasing 5 programs putting Mr. Obama’s words into practice. Click to learn about 5 projects equipping Africa’s next generations of young entrepreneurs with the skills they need to succeed in this burgeoning climate of private sector led growth.
Visiting field project locations in Afghanistan was a significant challenge for international stakeholders in 2015. For this reason, the UK aid initiative, Girls’ Education Challenge, held their Annual Review workshop with Afghani project teams in the Sri Lankan capital of Colombo. Christine Wallace reported on the ongoing security concerns, data monitoring strategies, issues of sustainability and more discussed at the GEC workshop.
CEI began its Innovator Interview series in 2015, in order to provide a new platform for innovative practitioners to share their experiences more directly with a global audience. One of our earliest interviews proved to be the most popular. Kidogo is a social enterprise that provides high-quality, affordable early childhood care and education to support the healthy growth and development of young children living in Africa’s urban slums. We spoke about Kidogo's goal to provide a new model for delivering sustainable and scalable care.
With more than 40 documented programs and counting, CEI's Low Cost Private Schools Topic Portal was one of the site's most popular features in 2015. The portal explores six common characteristics of low-cost private schools based on an analysis of their stated missions and operational models. These range from chains of schools that standardize their models to keep costs down to programs that provide support services to make schools more sustainable and affordable for underserved communities.
World Bank Edcuation blogger Michael Trucano provides a well-respected, frank, and informed opinion on a host of global education issues, and CEI was thrilled to be featured by Trucano in this piece, originally published at the World Bank Education Blog. Trucano notes how important results and assessment are for budding education technology models, especially in a field where hype can sometimes exceed impact, and examines our Education Technology Topic Portal (and accompanying Database-at-a-Glance report) in this context.
Meenu is 21, she is a teacher at JGM Public School – a primary school in Khajuri, East Delhi. She is one of the 12,000 teachers whose work is being recognized and shared within Changemaker Teacher Networks to influence millions of existing teachers in India into re-thinking their role in shaping our society and the world.
Michelle Neuman is a Program Director at R4D with a focus on early childhood development (ECD) and global education. In May, we spoke with Neuman about her personal commitment to early childhood development, her views on some of the field’s most persistent barriers, and more.
2) Innovation, Impact, and Recognition: 4 Projects from CEI's Program Database Selected as 2015 WISE Award Winners
When 2015’s WISE Awards were announced, CEI was thrilled that four programs profiled in our extensive database had been recognized for the prestigious honor. We are always happy when programs that we profile receive the recognition they deserve, and cannot wait to see how 2015’s winners translate this award into lasting impact for those committed to improving their lives and societies through education.
Most agree on the potential impact of education technology. It is the implementation and sustainability of these programs that remain at question. CEI's most widely read blog article of 2015 gives a firsthand account of one such program's experience managing a promising technology model. Bringing ICT into rural Kenyan classrooms has been a significant challenge. Shipping and installing equipment is time consuming, and reaching remote schools during the rains is difficult. Project staff even had to work out how to stop ants moving into a server at one point. But the Girls’ Education Challenge iMlango project has successfully managed to put in place the three Cs of Connectivity, Content and Capacity.
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Photo Credit (top image): Tom Perry, World Bank