SUMMA, the Laboratory for Research and Innovation in Education for Latin America and the Caribbean, and ProFuturo, the digital education program promoted by Fundación Telefónica and Fundación ̈”La Caixa”, began a collaboration that contains two lines of work: a strategic and evaluation, which seeks to improve the production of knowledge of the ProFuturo program, and a second one aimed at dissemination, which is aimed at disseminating innovations, pieces of knowledge and evidence in the field of digital transformation in education in Latin America.
Innovations to highlight
Within this framework, content and stories are being developed that are published periodically on the ProFuturo Observatory website, about innovative initiatives and practices in the region, and others that have already been highlighted on the SUMMA Innovation Map. Its purpose is to recognize the work that various actors and organizations are developing in the region to promote new solutions in the field of digital inclusion in vulnerable educational environments. The collaboration also provides for support from SUMMA in conducting webinars and interviews and posts on specific topics related to educational innovation.
“In a world that is presented with challenges that are difficult to solve, collective well-being depends on all girls and boys having the education, support and opportunities they need to develop skills that allow them to create a better future for all. At ProFuturo we pursue the reduction of the educational gap through pedagogical innovation with the digital. For this reason, the ProFuturo Observatory promotes reflection on the current situation of educational innovation in the world. This collaboration with SUMMA is part of our shared interest for the generation of knowledge and the encouragement of critical reflection that leads our educational community to action”, says Javier González Casado, manager of the Innovation area of ProFuturo.
For his part, Dante Castillo-Canales, Director of Innovative Policies and Practices at SUMMA, insists that “digital inclusion, universal access to devices by students and having adequate levels of connectivity are basic conditions for girls, boys and young people in Latin America and the Caribbean can improve their learning opportunities. Effectively developing digital skills in teachers and students to enrich educational processes is still a pending task in the region’s educational agendas. This collaboration with ProFuturo seeks to help identify and recognize how various actors in the region promote said digital transformation agenda”.
From SUMMA, the collaboration is led by the Laboratory of Educational Innovations LAB-ED, which aims to identify innovative solutions to address the main educational gaps and model innovation processes aimed at guaranteeing the right to quality education and reducing educational inequalities.
The importance of innovation in a context of post-Covid recovery
Access to quality education has been a longstanding policy objective to reduce poverty and inequality in Latin America and the Caribbean. However, during the last three years, and due to the health crisis caused by COVID -19, educational systems have been deeply affected by periods of interruption of face-to-face classes, and the difficult and unequal access to virtual education, that has highlighted and deepened the gaps in access to connectivity and digital equipment.
Despite the fact that educational systems have advanced towards the promotion and use of technological and digital tools, they seem not to have been effectively integrated into the teaching and learning process. For this reason, it is a priority to advance in building systems of higher quality and inclusion, especially for those students from the most vulnerable sectors of the population.
About SUMMA, ProFuturo and its Observatory
SUMMA is the Laboratory for Research and Innovation in Education for Latin America and the Caribbean, whose mission is to promote social justice by promoting the right to education, with special attention to the most disadvantaged and historically excluded groups in society. We seek to increase the quality, equity and inclusion of the educational systems of Latin America and the Caribbean, supporting the improvement of decision-making processes, both in structural policies and in pedagogical practices in schools.
ProFuturo is a digital education program that seeks to reduce the educational gap in the world by improving the quality of education for boys and girls from vulnerable environments in Latin America, the Caribbean, Africa and Asia. To do this, it relies on digital technologies with the aim of promoting the development of innovative pedagogical skills in the classroom and preventing the digital divide from deepening existing educational inequalities.
The ProFuturo Observatory promotes discussion and reflection on the current situation of digital education in the world. To do this, it investigates and analyzes approaches, methodologies, initiatives and trends, and consults with the best experts to make visible solutions that allow teachers, boys and girls in vulnerable environments to improve their opportunities to access quality education. All of this is transformed into articles and posts, written and audiovisual, that give an account of the latest developments that are being prepared in the world of education with the use of technology.
Get to know the ProFuturo Observatory and read the first two posts (in Spanish) on innovative practices in Latin America: