This last year has been a busy and exciting time for our small team, which has grown to 16 people who are dedicated to, and passionate about changing education in South Africa. We are proud of what has been achieved in such a short space of time, and we wanted to share with you just some of our achievements for 2012.
- 2011-2012 – Siyavula ran numerous workshops with educators, exposing them to the world of OER and Creative Commons (+200 educators have attended these events).
- January 2012 – Siyavula (mentioned as the Shuttleworth Foundation) was highlighted by the Minister of Basic Education at the announcement of the matric results
- January 2012 – Schools across South Africa started taking delivery of their free copies of Siyavula’s textbooks, Everything Maths and Everything Science, printed and distributed by the Department of Basic Education (DBE) for all government schools across the country, in English and Afrikaans.
- February 2012 – Siyavula launched their websites for their textbooks under a Creative Commons CC-BY licence: http://everythingscience.co.za/ and http://everythingmaths.co.za/ – Gr 10-12 Physical Sciences and Maths books can be read online, downloaded as PDFs and also accessed via cellphone. A report of the usage for 2012 can be accessed here.
- February 2012 – Some of the Siyavula team received funding to attend the Connexions Conference in Houston, Texas. This was a great opportunity to connect with other international projects and collaborate on technology. As we work at the forefront of technology production for schools, it allowed for insightful sharing of information with the other projects.
- March 2012 – Siyavula was spun out of the Shuttleworth Foundation as a social enterprise, whose shareholder’s agreement states that content must be released under a CC-BY licence, thus ensuring that their openly licensed educational resources will always be freely and openly available for anyone to access and use.
- March, May, June, August 2012 – Siyavula held authoring workshops with volunteers to create openly licensed content for Gr 4-6 Natural Sciences and Technology, Gr 10 Life Sciences and Gr 10 Maths Literacy.
- April 2012 – The Intelligent Practice service was launched, providing an online, interactive learning and testing tool for FET Mathematics and Physical Sciences learners. Since the launch date, there have been more than 4 300 users, completing more than 67 400 exercises.
- July 2012 – Everything Maths and Science launched on Mxit and in three months +300 000 learners subscribed to the openly licensed content. This represents 10% of the learner base in South Africa, and this number is expected to grow in coming years.
- October 2012 – Siyavula received sponsorship to send Megan Beckett to OpenED 2012 in Vancouver to present on Siyavula and their OERs – her talk was extremely well received by the international OER community.
- November 2012 – In partnership with Sasol Inzalo, Siyavula’s openly licensed workbooks for Gr 4-6 Natural Sciences and Technology were printed by DBE for all government schools for distribution for free for the 2013 school year, in English and Afrikaans. These are the only CAPS aligned resources available for schools for 2013. They are available for download from http://www.thunderboltkids.co.za/
- November 2012 – DBE again printed Everything Maths and Everything Science textbooks for free distribution to all government schools in South Africa, proofread and translated by volunteers. The CAPS PDFs of these textbooks are now available for download here: http://www.everythingmaths.co.za/grade-11 and http://everythingscience.co.za/grade-11 (the CAPS web version is coming soon – it is currently the NCS version)
- November 2012 – Siyavula completed their Gr 10 Mathematical Literacy textbook which will also be available on their website and on Mxit in 2013 under a CC-BY licence.
- December 2012 – For the first time Siyavula awarded badges to some members of the Siyavula Community, for their volunteer involvement in authoring free and open content.
- December 2012 – Two members of the Siyavula team were invited by Google to attend their OER Developers Workshop in Mountain View, California in December 2012.
We look forward to an exciting new year and all that 2013 has in store for us!