South Africa's current education system is failing its learners by not providing the skills required for a rapidly changing world. The challenge is complex and no single reform or program can fix our education. That’s why SA’s Impact Education Consortium brings together transformative grassroots education solutions that work, right now. Our nationally recognised collective has committed to a shared community vision of constantly improving educational results. All of the partners involved hold each other accountable for our joint commitment to building future-fit school-leavers and a robust economy.

These cross-sector partners -- including businesses, civic organisations, nonprofits and investors -- adopt common goals and expand on best practices for their local community. Our singular aim is to improve educational outcomes and expand opportunities for every child through guiding principles and a continuum of quality benchmarks. We collect and share data annually on the progress we are making on at least six cradle-to-career goals. In short, data gives us the insight and information to make smarter investments in the success of every child, cradle to career.


The 2017 South African Impact Education Consortium

Our Approach

Rather than trying to change the education system, we focus on transformation. This is because it is too time-consuming to lobby for government-led educational initiatives. And so we work with inspired education leaders who want to find transformative solutions within existing constraints. All of our solutions are focused on learning, not teaching. They all call for helping children find their passion, purpose, and meaning in learning. We all want children to know how to make their own plans and follow through on those plans. We strive to give children first-hand experiences of the world and to bring together the worlds outside and inside the classroom through collaboration and co-location. Finally, we are passionate about using technology to foster learning.



 "Learning is not the product of teaching. Learning is the product of the activity of learners."

John Holt

Here's what each partner brings to the Consortium:


UNESCO Regional Office for Southern Africa (ROSA) provides access to learning materials that support the following themes:

  • Global Citizenship Education: Nurturing respect for all, building a sense of belonging to a common humanity and helping learners become responsible and active global citizens.
  • Education for Sustainable Development: Transforming society by reorienting education and helping learners develop knowledge, skills, values and behaviours needed for sustainable development.
  • Sustainability Starts with Teachers: Training educators to show learners how to be responsible citizens who can make a positive contribution to society, to peace and to sustainable development.

Siyafunda Community Technology Centers

Siyafunda provides access to their community technology centres, where people can freely use computers, the internet, and other digital technologies that enable them to gather information, create, learn, and communicate with others while they develop essential digital skills.

The focus is on the use of digital technologies to support community, economic, educational, and social development — reducing isolation, bridging the digital divide, promoting health issues, creating economic opportunities, and reaching out to youth. Providing essential skills to the youth and the unemployed and people with disabilities, thereby making them employable and alleviating unemployment by networking with recruitment agencies, government agencies and businesses, thus becoming an enabler for job creation.

Ashoka Changemaker Schools

Ashoka Southern Africa builds and cultivates a community of change leaders who see that the world now requires everyone to be a changemaker. Together, they collaborate to transform institutions and cultures worldwide so they support change-making for the good of society.

Ashoka SA provides a roadmap for schools in the pipeline to become Changemaker Schools — schools that encourage their students to become changemakers: young people with the skills and confidence to change the world for the good of all.

We also work with Ashoka to Start Empathy and Foster Youth Entrepreneurship through implementing the SOLE methodology in classrooms.

Newcastle University & UNISA

Both universities are helping answer our Big Impact Question: “How does the Impact Education Consortium create sustainable change?”

Our Impact Assessment Project seeks to fine-tune the indicators and measurements related to teacher empowerment and learner outcomes. The project builds on the global evidence from other SOLE organisations, the shared learning from parents and teachers using SOLE as a learning tool, and most importantly the feedback from the learners’ SOLE experiences.

SOLE South Africa

SOLE South Africa is the lead implementing partner and has the global SOLEs mandate to implement this project. SOLE SA provides open source cradle-to-career education technology, designed to be both supportive and transformative of SA’s education policies. The non-profit does this by championing the globally recognised Self-Organised Learning Environments (SOLEs) to South Africa’s 25,574 schools.

The company distributes sponsored “SOLE in a Box” kits to 20,935 marginalised schools. The kits consist of 10 mobile devices, Internet connection, the detailed SOLE Toolkit and access to a database of Big Questions, linked to the school curriculum and the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals. We also provide mentorship and guidance to teachers and parents who want to run SOLE sessions.




SOLE South Africa powers a cradle to career edtech platform to enable parents and teachers to facilitate Self Organised Learning Environments (SOLEs).

The Big Questions asked during SOLE sessions spark creativity, curiosity and wonder in learners and inspire them to take control of their own learning, while cultivating innovation for a more sustainable future.


Non Profit Company: 2017 / 058452 / 08
An Open Educational Resource (OER)