The Varkey Foundation’s ‘Making Ghanaian Girls Great’ (MGCubed) project uses innovative satellite-enabled technology to deliver quality education to marginalised students in Ghana and successfully address some of the country’s key education challenges. Declining numbers of teachers combined with a rapidly increasing school population has contributed to a country-wide shortage of high quality teachers, which disproportionately impacts on the poorer, rural regions of Ghana where we also see a greater number of pupils never entering school (36%) or dropping out (27%) (UNICEF, 2015). This proven approach has significant potential to be scaled up across sub-Saharan Africa to help the pressing need of access to quality teaching in the most disadvantaged areas, reaching the most marginalised pupils.
Since March 2014, the Project has been operating the only live, synchronous, interactive distance learning programme in sub-Saharan Africa. With the support of DFID’s Girls’ Education Challenge, MGCubed employs a radically different approach to giving students and teachers access to quality education.
The Project equips classrooms in remote government schools with satellite-enabled, solar-powered technology. Qualified Trainers are located in studios in the capital region and deliver live, interactive lessons in Maths, English and gender empowerment to the remote classrooms.
The objective of the intervention is to positively impact learning outcomes in Maths and English and promote retention of girls in school.
MGCubed has proven that this innovative approach can lead to overcoming critical education barriers such as:
- enhancing the quality of instruction within schools to promote and embed student- centered learning in the classroom;
- combating at community level, cultural values about girls’ educational potential;
- empowering girls through enhanced self-esteem, including self-conceptualisation and self-belief, and improving peer-to-peer relationships;
- facilitating safe, supportive gender-equitable learning environments.