Dear Friends,

Thank you for the tremendous outpouring of support we received after announcing our launch on January 1! We want to thank you for your kind words, likes, follows and subscriptions to our mailing list.

We are proud to announce the launch of our pilot program in late February. We plan to teach two courses: Practical Math Skills and Leadership. The courses, offered to 30-40 boys and girls in the 11th and 12th grades, will teach students hands-on math and basic leadership skills they need to get a professional job or graduate degree after graduation.

We’re currently working with Marefat High School’s best mathematics teachers to develop effective teacher training and practical math skills curricula. We will measure the learning gains from the pilot by giving students pre- and post-pilot skills assessments. We will also ask our students to fill out a post-pilot survey that tells us what they think we did right, and how we can improve.

We have only begun our work, but it’s already inspirational. Last week, we spoke with our first group of students over Skype and it reminded me of why Firoz is so important, and why our team is working hard day and night to bring world-class education to Afghanistan. Our students dream of working at the forefronts of I.T., telecommunications, and engineering, as well as government and international relations. We listened to them carefully as they listed their goals, including the challenges and opportunities that they have in Kabul.

At the end of our conversation, our Kabul-based implementing partner Aziz said to me "Wazhma, this is not a business; it is a movement." Indeed, Firoz aims to change the shape of education in Afghanistan, making it accessible for all Afghans through technology, regardless of the security and economic challenges that the students are facing. For this movement to sustain itself and bring education and economic opportunities to the country, we want to collaborate with entities who are actively working in developing education in Afghanistan. We’re thus humbled and fortunate to be partnering with Marefat High School to implement our pilot program this winter.

Coupling this vision of collaborative progress in education with inquiries about how best you can help Firoz, We want to emphasize the importance of your support to Firoz by simply staying connected. We want to hear your ideas, and learn from you. We also want to let you know why it’s important to believe in educating young Afghans and how it’s one of the best long-term investments you can make. If you are interested in reading our business model and speaking to our team, please email us!

Also, please like, follow, and subscribe to our mailing list to stay in touch with us. We would love to send you updates about our pilot.

From the Firoz team.