Philippine Dolbeau is a 19-year-old entrepreneur who established her innovative start-up when she was only 15 years old. She is transforming education technology by integrating simple digital solutions to the education system, which facilitates the lives of teachers and improves security in schools for students.
“It was a regular school day in 2014. I went home, switched on the TV and I saw a news item about a little boy named Charles, who had fallen asleep in the bus during a school trip. The bus driver didn’t notice him and he was left alone in the bus for 8 hours, without food and without water. All this happened, because the teacher didn’t have a registration system. I wanted to change that and make sure this wouldn’t happen again. That’s what inspired me to create my start-up NewSchool – to increase security in school environments and to make education a positive experience for students,” she says on how it all started.
“NewSchool is an application designed essentially for teachers to digitally register their students with a Bluetooth system. The mobile application comes with a connected key holder, which allows students to be detected when carrying it. It also ensures that every student is rewarded for his efforts, thanks to a gamification system in the app where students earn points. When reaching a certain amount of points, he can exchange them with creative education contents such as videos or even templates for class presentations. It will soon have other functions, such as, facilitating borrowing books from libraries. In 2015, NewSchool started off as a small project for school – I entered an innovation competition with it, won and the next thing I find is developers from Apple calling me to help me out with the application.”
She thinks that more resources should be provided to schools to continue the digital transformation. The world of education must adapt to the specificities of the new generations.
“My mother is a teacher and I have always had a positive experience at school during my educational path. However, the French education system needs to change and the mindsets need to move towards digitalizing elements in education. Digital devices and technology are not here to make our lives more difficult, but to transform and facilitate education to provide a great learning experience for children and youth.”
The UNESCO Youth Programme works to ensure that talented young people’s ideas and skills enact real change in areas related to UNESCO’s fields of competence. Youth are no longer just beneficiaries in the organization’s work, but essential actors in finding the solutions to some of the world’s biggest challenges.