Kauti Primary School
Read and Prosper has chosen Kauti Primary School in Kathiani, Kenya, as the site of our first pilot project. Kathiani is a small town located approximately 20 kilometers northeast of Machakos. The trip from Nairobi to Kathiani is roughly 2 hours by car, via the Mombasa Highway and a dirt road.
In June 2012, our Director of Technology, Ian Muir, visited Kenya to meet with project partners, school staff, and students. The following video shows the road from just outside Machakos to the gates of Kauti school:
Our primary partner organization, GIVEWATTS, has already deployed a solar lantern program at this school which provides local families with energy efficient lanterns that are recharged using solar power. This solar lighting displaces expensive and polluting kerosene lamps (families often spend ~40% of their disposable income on kerosene) and provides dramatically superior lighting. By providing superior lighting, the GIVEWATTS program is already producing educational improvements.
Like many schools in the developing world, Kauti Primary School has very limited access to books. Students often rely on little more than a blackboard and notebooks. Therefore, Read and Prosper’s pilot project will complement the GIVEWATTS solar lighting systems, which enable students to work at home, by supplying e-readers and e-books that will significantly expand students’ access to learning material.
Kauti Headmaster Philip Muìndi and Deputy Headmistress Mary Custer
The centralized solar system that we will use to power our e-readers will also offer Kauti Primary School the ability to charge other electronic devices such as mobile phones. In addition, we will leverage this steady supply of renewable energy to also install a lighting system which will allow students and staff members to extend their productive time beyond natural daylight hours.
Ian’s trip to Kauti provided Read and Prosper with a comprehensive list of books approved for teaching the Kenyan national curriculum. This will provide a strong basis for the development of our own reading list, to be pre-loaded on every e-reader that we deliver to Kauti school.
Our meetings with the Kauti school administrators and teachers were extremely encouraging. They are excited to work with Read and Prosper to provide a novel educational experience for their students. And, the Kauti school staff impressed us with their dedication, reaffirming that this school is an excellent choice for our first project.
If you are interested in supporting the deployment of this pilot project, please consider donating to Read and Prosper.