Approximately 31% of Zimbabwe’s primary and secondary schools have internet access. In rural areas the majority are connected by ADSL or VSAT. 75% of the country’s 6,611 unconnected schools are primary schools.
Public and Private Sector actors have initiatives in place to make a digitally enabled Zimbabwe a reality
School Connectivity through the USF
The Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education (MoPSE) has pushed for internet connectivity across all schools in Zimbabwe. Through the Universal Service Fund (USF), the ministry has allocated 6,300 primary and secondary schools to three internet service providers as technical partners.
Ecosystem Investment in Digital Learning
Motivated by the coronavirus pandemic response a number of e-learning platforms have scaled or entered the market, including: Ruzivo Digital Learning, Google Classroom, eLearning Zimbabwe (Intel Technology Provider), Dzidzo Inhaka E-learning, Double Click E-learning, Shepherd Chimururi, Cassava Smartech – Akello Digital Classroom
Overcoming the Urban- Rural Digital Divide
Through the national ICT plan the government set the country on a path to become a knowledge-based society targeting ubiquitous connectivity by 2020. Strategic focusses included: closing the digital divide through rural coverage, improved electricity access, ICT skills development and policy streamlining
Giga has been working with Zimbabwe since February 2020. Some of Giga’s priority areas for collaboration in Zimbabwe include:
Mobilizing the financing to connect the 6,611 schools that currently lack connectivity.
Assisting in re-structuring of the USF by helping to set clear and realistic targets for universal access, building on existing school connectivity uses.
Working with ISPs and MNOs to identify opportunities to reduce data costs for schools and students.
From schools to communities
Schools are often the centre of communities. Giga hopes to explore sustainable models to use the school as a hub to connect people in the local community. Connecting learners has never been more important than it is now, after schools in Zimbabwe closed in late March to prevent the spread of COVID-19.