In our efforts at 249Startups to generate information , data and opportunities in sudanese markets , We have launched series of forums where we will be hosting experts, Corporate executives and entrepreneurs to detect challenging areas and market gaps, and identify what opportunities lie within it, and to provide market insights and know-how on approaching specified subjects.
This is done with the aim of equipping the participants with explicit knowledge about the identified markets and widen their horizons by communicating the different opportunities which lie within them, and try to direct them towards working in areas that are currently a priority for government , development & private sectors .Additionally, encourage the participants to develop solutions to address the identified challenges and gaps in the industry.
And, with the call for applicants for the 3rd batch of the Orange Corners Sudan Incubation Program started, we are considering how the upcoming incubation cohort can address these challenges as well as the needs of the country. With that came the idea
of the incubation program having thematic tracks dedicated to the identified challenging areas and gaps.
Seventh Forum : The role of Education on Economic Development Forum
In this Forum we had : Abubaker Mustafa, Co-Founder of Yalla Nt3alam, and the Education Strategies Specialist (Planning and coordinator) at Sadagaat Organization Heiba Gaffier, to discuss The role of Education on Economic Development, and Sara Yassen, Volunteer in Education without Borders, and Academic Director at El Jreef Refomatory Project. this session will be moderated by the former Consultant for the Ministry of Education, and Masters Degree holder in Education and International Development, UCL. Fatima Joda. .Watch the full webinar and reach the summary of discussion points .
Education is one of the eight tracks of the Orange Corners Program. This webinar is an opportunity for entrepreneurs to learn about the opportunities available in these paths.
Education is a systematic and intentional cause, to provide learners with :
- Knowledge, such as mathematics, physics, history..etc.
- Attitude or behaviour
- Skills, such as playing musical instruments.
Our education system in all its stages is focusing on knowledge only and neglecting the other two parts.
Overlook at the educational system in Sudan
Education in Sudan is based on (Khalwa) – a place where young people go to learn Quran- Khalwas are relating to the ministry of religious affairs and endowments, instead of the ministry of education, Which creates problems. Furthermore, we have people with disabilities schools, and people who are constantly moving (ruhal) schools who are also relating to the ministry of social development instead of the ministry of education.
Another segment that faces difficulties with comprehension in the educational system is refugees and dislocated children.
The educational system developed from Khalwa to three main stages which are preschool education, elementary education, and secondary education. Secondary education is divided into two parts academic and technical. This education system was built by the colonizer for a specific purpose, which created a diversification in the distribution of opportunities between the different areas within the country.
- Preschool education is 90% controlled by the private sector.
- Primary education is the main focus of the government.
- Secondary education has two parts, academic and technical. There’s technical/academic schools, technical schools, and academic schools.
The educational levels have gone through many changes, but the ongoing form is 8 years of primary education, 3 years of secondary education. This form is supposed to change in the coming years to 6 years of primary education, 3 years middle, 3 years secondary.
Each of these levels has its own educational goals in the matter of knowledge, attitude, and skills.
It’s obvious that people in the centre (Khartoum state) are more fortunate in having better education quality than other states especially western states and southern states which is now The Republic Of South Sudan. This system created huge developmental gaps between the different people within one country.
- The main challenge that faces education in Sudan is infrastructure.
- Awareness about the importance of education.
- The number of qualified teachers.
- Very high literacy levels, according to UNICEF 3.6 million of 7 million children are dropping out.
- The state’s expenditure on education is poor. And it wasn’t a priority to all ex-governments.
All of these factors affect the quality of education. Civil society has a huge role in creating pressure on the government to take action. And actually, The problem isn’t in the education itself but in the economic situation.
Education without borders
Is a social change movement, and a voluntary youth activity aimed at developing education and the educational environment in Sudan. It was found in 2011 to shed light on education challenges and issues in Sudan, it works towards solving these problems through developing easily implemented programs that can be adapted by the community.
One of education without borders project is the educational material campaign (your old book is my new one) where they collect the old books from students who no longer need them and redistribute them for students in rural areas and in places where there is lack of educational materials. And other projects such as the educational environment, reading club, not descriptive activities, cinema, and others.
The most important project is Aljerif reformatory it started in 2011, it’s a project that focuses on children (less than 18 years) who did misdemeanour and is currently being held at the reformatory, they offer them academic and psychological support.
The perfect situation is when the state or the government takes care of providing education to the people because in this condition the opportunities will be open to all people regardless of their status or social class. But this isn’t an option for us here in Sudan, because of the economic crisis.
The current government doesn’t have the resources, and this is where the opportunity for investors, to fill the gap . However, this creates or keeps on the social differences between the different social classes, so it’s the entrepreneur’s duty to come up with innovative solutions to reduce education cost and fill this gap.
It’s actually positive that the government opens the door for investment in education, health and other primary services because it creates employment opportunities as well as more inclusion, but there must be some laws and regulations to guarantee the minimum requirement of the quality of the services provided.
The only way to achieve high-quality education with low cost is technology, such as Yalla Netalam which is a project founded in 2011 that focuses on the quality of education in rural areas and suburbs, it records high-quality videos that can be used by students in that area.| Abubaker Mustafa
As an example they worked on one of Aljazeera state villages called (Almiajna), they bought 2 projectors, installed them in the schools there and viewed the content previously recorded through them to the students in that village, that was during the school day. Then for after school, they established an institution called e-learning centre where they provided 3 tablets and 3 PC, where students come after the school day to watch the desired subjects explained.
After 3 years of launching this project they did a comparison between the percentage of success before and after the project, they found that it increased from 71% to 84%. All this was delivered with less than 200 dollars.
To implement any e-learning project, there are 4 main components that must be there
- Content, the educational material that needs to be delivered to the students.
- Tools and equipment, the technologies used to deliver the content.
- Training, its very important that the person who will be monitoring the tools receive training.
- Operating and follow up, there must be a trained person responsible for the equipment.
This model was done in 15 other villages, and it’s been very successful. The point is there are opportunities for creative solutions depending on technologies. In conclusion, if we need practical solutions at low cost, the best option is using technology, this will save us time, effort, and most importantly resources.
Likewise, we need to use this technology to include the dropouts or the people who aren’t included in the formal educational system.
Education in Sudan faces a lot of problems that can be explored and solved through innovation solutions this is entrepreneurs role. There’s a good bond between education and economy, the good quality education is the future of the good economy.
Get used of the service provided by telecommunication companies such as VAS to make it easy for people to reach to the e-learning.
This Article had been developed by 249Startups Team for purpose of learning and sharing knowledge as part of Markets Opportunities Mapping Forum .