For those who are tracking the progress of OLPC in India, here are few tidbits gleaned from the web: A fairly in-depth description of the OLPC pilot and a recent update on Nick Negroponte’s visit to Mumbai in August.
Here are some interesting photos from the wiki of thier initial pilot in Khairat village, in Raigadh district, Maharashtra. It is on the OLPC wiki and makes for interesting reading.
More recently there is an update on their activities in Mumbai on their wiki “Week of August 12” that I have excerpted below.
India: Nicholas and David Cavallo spent Monday in Mumbai with Satish Jha, president of OLPC India, under the aegis of Reliance. The day’s events included a national video conference, a meeting with Johny Joseph, chief secretary of the state of Maharashtra and a lecture to the Asia Society. Maharashtra is huge, with 100 million people, or about 10 percent of India’s total population.
On Tuesday, Reliance and the Digital Bridge Foundation organized a one-day workshop for teachers, laptop donees and volunteers. The goal was to provide a basic understanding of the XO and the OLPC approach to learning in a saturated deployment. The program motivated many attendees to launch new XO deployments and also to improve existing XO sites in India.
On Wednesday a similar workshop was held in Goa, organized by Dr. Rita Paes, the director of a local teachers’ college, and sponsored by the Goa Chamber of Commerce. Just as in Mumbai, more people and sites were engaged. With the support of local business and the teachers’ college, they will pursue a statewide deployment initiative for Goa, which already is advanced in providing connectivity and computers to schools.
Nicholas, David, Satish, Manusheel Gupta and the Reliance team also visited the remote Vastishala Khairat-Dhangarvada School, 81 km from Mumbai, where Carla Gómez Monroy deployed XOs some months ago. The children sang for their visitors, and presented them with red roses. Sandeep Surve, Khairat’s single teacher, believes deeply in the OLPC program. “Education through XOs has completely solved educational problems like child absenteeism, parent-teacher interaction, and lack of interest towards education,” he said. “Children relish coming to school every day, and their interest towards education has risen dramatically.”