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Rwanda signs up for one laptop project

By   |  January 9, 2007

Rwanda’s president Paul Kagame has committed his government to providing each primary school pupil with a laptop within the next five years. The announcement follows a New Year’s meeting in Urugwiro village between Kagame and One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) project founder Nicholas Negroponte.

In an announcement from the president’s office, Kagame said the decision had been made “in recognition of children being Rwanda’s most precious natural resource”.

“The government of Rwanda has committed to provide one laptop per child to all primary school children within five years.”

OLPC is a non-profit organisation aiming to provide children in developing nations with Linux-based low-cost laptop computers.

OLPC will provide laptops and support to test the concept fully and at no cost in Rwanda, Negroponte said.

Kagame said the initiative would strengthen the quality of already existing free and compulsory primary education, by adopting new tools for learning and engaging children more directly, both inside and outside of school.

“By moving to an electronic format, a much wider body of knowledge will be made available to children than was previously possible or economically feasible with printed text books,” he said.

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