Radio education making a comeback in Colombia during lockdown

Americas Now

Professors are teaching their lessons via radio broadcast

In the 1950´s Colombia, education in rural areas faced several challenges including an early dropout rate and a scarcity of teachers. Four decades of armed conflict in remote areas was a factor, but there also was the socio-economic reality that children were leaving school to work on their family farms.

But radio came to the rescue. Colombia began fighting illiteracy with radiophonic schools and soon enough the radio became a staple in each and every corner of the country. Now the radio has returned.   

In times of COVID-19 pandemic, remote education has been key to keep students connected.

Challenges, though, remain. Internet access is spotty and laptop computers, smartphones and tablets are hard to find.

So what happens in rural areas of Latin America, where connectivity is still lacking?    

One remote community in Colombia has found an answer by going back to its roots – the radio.   

Correspondent Michelle Begue went there and brought us this report.