It’s a small black box that doesn’t open‚ but for tens of thousands of children it’s a life-changing treasure chest: a digital library containing support material for high school maths and science. Anyone within a kilometre can download the material to their phone — and they don’t even have to be online. The black box is essentially its own server so learners can use Wi-Fi without having to use the internet provided by the main service providers. It is thus free and doesn’t require them to be online. On that server they can access digital copies of text books‚ and sound and video recordings of science lessons by hand-picked teachers who know how to make content accessible. Thanks to the Syafunda box‚ matric science marks have gone up by almost 30% in some schools‚ and another 15‚000 pupils are about to join the 31‚000 already benefiting‚ thanks to corporate sponsorship. The aim is to reach 100‚000 children by the end of 2018. "It’s a concept whose time has come‚" said Mary Metcalfe‚...

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