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Cloud computing delivers schooling in Africa

Ericsson says eight secondary schools in Africa have now received the PC as a Service solution, a cloud-computing solution that provides schools with a low-maintenance, easy-to-use model that is optimized for mobile broadband networks.  

The deployment is part of Connect To Learn's initiative in the Millennium Village clusters in Ghana, Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda. Connect To Learn is a collaborative effort between Ericsson, Intel, the Earth Institute and Millennium Promise that leverages the power of ICTs to bring a high quality education to students everywhere.

In addition, more than 500 scholarships will be distributed in 2012 thanks to Connect To Learn partners including Ericsson, the Sanchez-Palm Girls Scholarship Fund, SpinMaster, JM Eagle and a number of individual contributors. Scholarships cover tuition, boarding and other school-related expenses.

Elaine Weidman, Vice President, Sustainability and Corporate Responsibility, Ericsson, says: "Mobile and broadband technology is a key enabler for access to a quality education in all communities, even the poorest and most rural.   Delivering cloud-based computers and connecting them in the eight schools is a major step in our mission to bring a quality secondary education to more students."

PC as a Service uses laptops on a mobile broadband connection, and allows students to have access to the news, information and the latest educational content, as well as fellow students around the world. For teachers, it allows greater focus on students, as maintenance of the solution is done remotely.

The eight secondary schools now using the solution are located in Millennium Villages Project clusters in Ghana, Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda where Ericsson has been active in providing the network infrastructure and services to bring voice and data communications as part of the broader Millennium Villages Project.

During 2011 Connect To Learn was deployed in Ghana, Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda. In total, some 5,000 African students now have access to quality learning resources for a 21st century education.

In addition to these activities, ICT deployments have begun in Chile and Jamaica where hundreds more students will benefit from the support of Connect To Learn.

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