Let’s take a deeper look at the out-of-school youth. In South Asia, half of the youth (aged 15-17) are out of school.
Responsibility of contributing to family’s income
The out-of-school youth are often occupied with working, or helping out with chores. The global number of children in child labour is currently at 168 million, and more than half of them are in hazardous work. Asia Pacific has the largest numbers (almost 78 million). 59% of the child labourers are working in agriculture.
Child labour remains a matter of grave concern, and SE! would like to contribute to solving this challenge through education.
SE!: In order to fit learning easily into their current lifestyle, the solution needs to be flexible, self paced, and to allow the users to learn independently wherever they are.
Taking these challenges in mind, we started working on the solution that addresses the needs of our target audience.
Intermittent internet connectivity
We looked at the education technology solutions available in the market, and we found that most require users to be online in order to learn. For example: Khan Academy, Coursera, Udacity, Duolingo. This means that this solution would be out of reach for most of our target audience who do not have easy access to internet connectivity.
SE!: The technology needs to be able to support both online and offline learning.
Low end mobile devices only
While laptops, personal computers and tablets are mostly not within the reach of our target audience, mobile devices have seen a rapid increase in penetration rate. For example in Indonesia, according to APSI (Indonesian Cellular Phone Association), the number of smartphone users has been growing between 30-50% each year, and this growth momentum will remain intact.
The prices of mobile devices have been decreasing over the years, making these devices more affordable to the underprivileged demographic. The World’s cheapest mobile phone just started shipping in July 2016. The Freedom 251 mobile device in India, priced at just USD3.75.
SE!: We need to take into account the constrains of the low end mobile devices of our target audience: slow processor speed and low memory. Our app needs to be able to run smoothly on these devices.
I will be elaborating about our proposed solution on my next post.
Thank you for dropping by,
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About Friends of SE!
If you are passionate about education, and want to do your bit to make the world a better place, join us at Friends of SE!. As a SE! Friend, we just ask you to spread awareness about the importance of education and the challenges that education is facing at the moment – you can easily do so by sharing the SE! posts that jump out to you on your own social media channels. That is already spreading the word – it is that simple.
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