Pearson has launched a $15 million (£9.5 million) fund to invest in cheap private education in some of the world’s poorest areas.
The Pearson Affordable Learning Fund will invest in for-profit groups, which provide low-cost schooling in Africa and Asia. It’ll also invest in organisations that provide services ranging from teacher training to accreditation.
A Pearson spokesman said the group would consider investing more cash in the fund, depending on the speed and success of its first wave of investments.
This morning Pearson announced the fund’s first investment in Omega Schools, a chain of private schools based in Ghana. The group said that its investment will enable Omega to expand from serving around 6,000 students, to “tens of thousands” throughout the country.
The value of the deal has not been disclosed.
Sir Michael Barber (pictured), who was appointed as Pearson’s chief education adviser in May 2011, said: “Low-cost private education is an important, complementary element of education in developing countries and should be seen as an active partner with governments looking to ensure all children have access to a high quality education.
“We are convinced that affordable schools, operated on a for-profit basis, can make a big difference.”