What do you mean by ‘usable offline’?
The School in a Box can now be used entirely offline, except of course for specific online apps – which are NOT necessary to complete lessons. All content, quizzes and data is stored on a local server within the Box. New lessons and apps are added monthly, either by going online (max 1 GB), or through a USB flash drive.
What is the difference between the various School in a Box products?
With the exception of the SiB SOLO, each kit includes a router and either a Raspberry Pi or a mini-server, which means that all lessons can be accessed offline, as well as most apps and the dashboard for reporting and monitoring.
The various offline options (School in a Box, SiB Lite and SiB Mini) differ in their price, packaging and in the amount of tablets they can support: the Lite is in a padded backpack and has 1-4 tablets; the Mini is in a briefcase and has 5-10 tablets; and the regular School in a Box is in a trunk and has a more powerful server which can handle up to 30 tablets, or even 60 in certain circumstances.
With the SOLO tablet, connectivity is through your own wifi and all lessons are streamed as you go through the lesson. In addition, the SOLO tablet comes with a keyboard cover and not just a protective cover. The SOLO is more suited to single users or small tutor groups that won’t benefit from the data savings generated by using the caching server.
What internet speed and how much data do I need to use the SOLO tablet?
This depends completely on how often you plan to use it. Each lesson uses between 20MB and 80MB, depending on the length of the video content, so two lessons a day, every weekday, would use approximately 2GB per month. In terms of speed, a 2 MB line is sufficient.
Is there any other equipment we need to provide?
We strongly recommend that learners use a pen and notebook to make notes as they learn. When you have multiple learners in the same venue, we recommend that they bring their own earphones.
For which subjects and grades are lessons provided?
Content is included for multiple subjects from Grade 1 up, including maths, science, English and more. New content is added constantly – for the most current content list, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What if we have an unreliable electricity supply?
There is a portable solar supply available at an extra cost; please contact our office for more information.
Can you track user info (M&E) reports on the SOLO?
Absolutely – there’s a full dashboard available to facilitators (“coaches”) which provides detailed data on every learner to a granular level.
Do I need an email address / PC?
No, this isn’t necessary with any version of the School in a Box.
How do license fees work?
For all versions, the first year’s licence fee is included. After that, a R300 per annum per tablet licence fee is payable. Multiple users do not pay extra fees, so a single tablet used by 5 users is still only liable for R300 per annum.
With a full School in a Box, does each child need his/her own tablet?
No, a single tablet can have multiple users.
If I want to add more tablets to the box later, how much will this cost?
Currently the standard 7″ Lenovo tablets cost R1 600 for each extra tablet with cover – but bear in mind that you may also need new charging ports once the included ports are all being used – and that we may be able to use other suitably specced android tablets of your choosing.
What about theft or damage?
School in a Box owners are responsible for insuring the Box and contents – we provide you with an excellent insurance provider and package that you may choose to sign up with directly.
Boxes can be easily packed away into a secure store room or office area, or even taken away from the venue overnight. The SiB Mini and SiB Lite are even more portable.
As tablets are “locked” into our system, they are effectively useless away from the router and server and this tends to eliminate theft concerns.
Can the School in a Box be used in other African countries or with a different syllabus?
Absolutely. Customising of content is not difficult, and we can work with any prospective user to help them to do this.