HP has announced the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Government of Egypt and the e-Africa Commission, paving the way for the launch of the third NEPAD e-School in the Northern African region. The objective of the NEPAD e-schools initiative is to supply African schools with an educational technology solution including computer hardware, software, Internet connectivity, technical support and teacher training.
“The signing of the MoU is a milestone for Egyptian education and an inspirational way to start 2006. We applaud the NEPAD e-schools initiative and its partners such as HP who are transforming the face of education on the African continent,” said DR. Salah Elawa, the manager of the technology development center, who represents the Minister of Education for the NEPAD e-schools initiative.
Six schools were selected by the Egyptian Government to participate in the demonstration project, of which, three of the schools were allocated to HP. The three schools allocated to the HP Consortium are, El Moqta Secondery Mixed School in Daqahleya, Omaer Ibn Abd El Aziz (Mixed School)-, Elsalaa Secondery School in Sohag and Elhadin Secondery School in El Beheira.
The NEPAD e-Schools Project was first publicly announced at the 2003 Africa Economic Summit in Durban, South Africa. The scope of the project focuses on providing an end-to-end education solution that will utilise Information and Communication Technology (ICT) to connect schools to the NEPAD e-schools network and the Internet. In addition to connectivity, solutions will provide content and learning material, as well as establish health points at schools in support of the NEPAD e-Health Programme.
“Since the inception of NEPAD, government and private sector leaders across Africa have agreed on the pivotal role that ICT will play in accelerating economic growth and development throughout the continent. Central to achieving these goals is the fostering of technology skills and knowledge,” says Dr Henry Chasia, Executive Deputy Chairman, NEPAD e-Africa Commission.
The strategy is to turn all African high schools and primary schools into NEPAD e-Schools within ten years of implementation. Upon completion of the project, more than 600 000 schools across the continent will enjoy the benefits of ICT and connectivity to the NEPAD e-School network and the Internet.
“The support HP is receiving from the Egyptian Minister is critical to the success of this upliftment project. We look forward to continued success in positively impacting education and human development in Egypt and the Northern African Region,” says Ahmed Samy, Managing Director, HP Egypt. “HP as a company is committed to realising the potential of technology in education and has been working with governments from all over the globe to deliver the power of ICT to schools.”
Partners to the HP e-Schools consortium include the HP i-Community team; HP Channel Partners; EduPac; EduTouch; Mindset; Transtel; Eskom; Computers for Kids; Multichoice Africa; Smart Technologies and Canonical
A number of private companies, including the HP consortium, have committed to sponsoring the demonstration project for a period of 12 to 18 months in 16 participating countries. Participating countries are: Algeria, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Egypt, Gabon, Ghana, Kenya, Lesotho, Mali, Mauritius, Mozambique, Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, South Africa and Uganda.
The e-schools project falls under the auspices of the e-Africa commission, the NEPAD ICT Task Team responsible for developing the NEPAD ICT programme and implementing related projects.
HP has been present in the Middle East since 1968, and opened its first regional office in 1994. HP Middle East is the market leader for Enterprise, Small and Medium Business and Consumer technology products, and offers a large portfolio of solutions and services in various business domains.
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