Phase 1B of the pilot project

During the week of 13th May, we are doubling the number of e-readers in Oyugis with the schools, with another 7 devices available for the pilot schools. We also provided a 3G Wi-Fi router to enable one of the schools to have rural Wi-Fi so they can connect and use the Wi-Fi only Kindles directly without needing to visit the local Wi-Fi hotspot in Oyugis town after hours. The 3G Wi-Fi router includes an internal (removable) battery that enables the router to work for up to a school day without needing external power. And we also provided several solar storage devices (basically a USB-based battery unit that can store energy collected from the sun and provide it when needed).

We are going to decide on how to distribute the additional equipment in the coming days based on feedback from the schools and the project coordinators in Oyugis. Kachieng secondary school is likely to receive several additional devices based on their helpful reports and feedback. They have been able to explain why having the additional devices will help them with their teaching.

Evidence based?

One of the objectives for this project is to gather sufficient evidence about the project. The evidence can then be used:

  • to enable the project to be assessed in terms of the impact, applicability, etc.
  • to help us improve the project and the outcomes e.g. in terms of the effectiveness, and efficiency of what we do
  • To help others to learn from our experiences and our work so they (e.g. you) can build on the good bits and learn from anything else that’s relevant.

I recently read a brief report written by NESTA a UK based organisation. I recommend you read it. I found the simple Nesta Standards of Evidence figure is effective to help focus the work we’re doing. My impression is we’re working around Level 2 at the moment.

Level 1 states: “You can describe what you do and why it matters, logically, coherently and convincingly” while Level 2 states: “You capture data that shows positive change, but you cannot confirm you caused this”. We are capturing data, however we don’t have enough data to assess the effects of providing the devices to the schools yet.