BOSTON, November 13 /PRNewswire/ --
- Organization Moves Ahead with Billion Kids Library Following Successful Launch of Center in Nepal and Announcement of First Annual Conference in London in Early 2008
Open Learning Exchange Inc. (OLE), an international educational organization, is seeking to ensure Universal Basic Education (UBE) by 2015 by creating a global network of country-based Centers that provide free and open access to basic educational content. Following a successful pilot Center in Nepal, OLE today announced plans to expand its network of country-based Centers in the lesser developed regions of the world.
"Currently over one billion children do not have access to the basic education they require to become productive members of society," said Dr. Richard Rowe, Ph.D., founder and chair of Open Learning Exchange Inc. "We are helping OLE Centers throughout the world develop effective and culturally appropriate elementary and secondary school courses that are linked to local priorities and standards and that are in local languages. All of these materials will be freely available, with user comments and ratings, in the Billion Kids Library."
Founded in April 2007, and supported by a grant from the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, OLE supports the development of local Centers that ensure universal availability of free, open and high-quality curricula for educators and students. These Centers, working closely with their governments and with grassroots support and financial assistance from OLE, stimulate innovative approaches to teaching and learning and participate as members of the global 'Open Educational Resource' (OER) network. In addition to the Billion Kids Library, OLE's online Course Development Studio enables educators and learners throughout the world to translate, share, re-mix, and co-create educational courses that meet their local needs. The Billion Kids Library is a unique repository of open educational resources and, together with the Course Development Studio, is projected to have the largest number of users of any digital library. The Library will be an ever-evolving tool for educators worldwide to share their curricula. The Nepal OLE Center (nepal.ole.org) has demonstrated the effectiveness of the OLE model. OLE Centers in Asia, Africa, India, the Caribbean and Latin America are expected within the next year.
"There is no longer any good reason why every child in the world shouldn't have access to a basic education," says Catherine Casserly, a Hewlett Foundation Program Officer who has helped develop the international movement to share open educational resources on the Internet. "The task is to create the systems that will allow locally created educational material to be broadly shared. And that's why we're so pleased to be supporting Open Learning Exchange."
OLE co-founder, Mouli Ramani, added, "As our world becomes increasingly interconnected, it is no longer a matter of charity to aid lesser developed countries; it is a social and economic imperative. OLE provides investors the unique opportunity to participate in a global mission to help unite the world through educational content."
OLE will host Open Learning Exchange '08, its first annual conference about universal basic education in London, early next year at the London School of Economics. The conference will offer solutions to the escalating educational inequities around the world by presenting successful organizational and technological approaches for achieving the UN's Millennium Goal of providing all children access to education by 2015. For more information about Open Learning Exchange, visit http://www.ole.org.
About Open Learning Exchange
Founded in April 2007 as a tax-exempt organization, OLE's mission is to support Centers that provide access to high quality courses and related materials by educators and students in their country, openly sharing these educational resources on a global scale. OLE is committed to fulfill by 2015 Article 26 of the 1948 UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights which states: "Everyone has the right to education. Education shall be free, at least in the elementary and fundamental stages." For more information on OLE, visit http://www.ole.org.