[Sur] [support-gang] Bad article in Economist on OLPC Peru

Caryl Bigenho caryl en laptop.org
Sab Abr 7 12:15:56 EDT 2012

Unfortunately, what they say is pretty valid. Lack of proper training of the teachers (spend some money on it, for heavens sake!) and community involvement (they turned down lots of offers when they were starting up) have pretty much doomed this to near failure.  Add to that the recent warehouse fire that destroyed 10s of thousands of brand new XOs slated to go to the rural children in Amazonas... a double tragedy.

Contrast that with Uruguay where there is strong teacher, parent and community involvement.  It is not OLPC's fault things are not going well, it is the politicians and top educational administrators who think they know everything. They don't.


> Date: Sat, 7 Apr 2012 12:04:25 -0400
> From: sj en laptop.org
> To: support-gang en lists.laptop.org
> CC: support-gang en laptop.org
> Subject: Re: [support-gang] Bad article in Economist on OLPC Peru
> Yes, Rodrigo is writing one...
> On Sat, Apr 7, 2012 at 11:39 AM, Alan Claver <alc en psu.edu> wrote:
> > Here's the article (I don't care to give them any page views so "Fair Use"). The limited comments in the article (as well as my original source for the link - http://www.economist.com/node/21552202) were all in agreement. No positive comments.
> >
> > Hope someone is planning on some sort of response.
> >
> > Here's the URL if you disagree: http://www.economist.com/node/21552202
> >
> >
> > Education in Peru
> >
> > Error message
> >
> > A disappointing return from an investment in computing
> >
> > Apr 7th 2012 | LIMA | from the print edition
> >
> > GIVING a child a computer does not seem to turn him or her into a future Bill Gates—indeed it does not accomplish anything in particular. That is the conclusion from Peru, site of the largest single programme involving One Laptop per Child, an American charity with backers from the computer industry and which is active in more than 30 developing countries around the world.
> >
> > Peru is enjoying an economic boom, but has one of Latin America’s worst education systems. Flush with mining revenues, the previous government embraced the laptop initiative. It spent $225m to supply and support 850,000 basic laptops to schools throughout the country. But Peruvians’ test scores remain dismal. Only 13% of seven-year-olds were at the required level in maths and only 30% in reading, the education ministry reported last month.
> >
> > An evaluation (http://www.iadb.org/en/research-and-data/publication-details,3169.html?pub_id=IDB-WP-304) of the laptop programme by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) found that the children receiving the computers did not show any improvement in maths or reading. Nor did it find evidence that access to a laptop increased motivation, or time devoted to homework or reading. The report applauded the government for providing much-needed hardware: less than a quarter of Peruvian households had a computer in 2010. But it now needs to improve teacher-training and the curriculum, said Julian Cristia of the IDB. Above all, the classroom environment needs to change.
> >
> > Part of the problem is that students learn faster than many of their teachers, according to Lily Miranda, who runs a computer lab at a state school in San Borja, a middle-class area of Lima. Sandro Marcone, who is in charge of educational technologies at the ministry, agrees. “If teachers are telling kids to turn on computers and copy what is being written on the blackboard, then we have invested in expensive notebooks,” he said. It certainly looks like that.
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