Joe Ricketts’ inspiration for Opportunity Education came from a conversation with Shange Wilson, a Serengeti safari tour guide. Wilson told Joe about how he was funding a school, Sotwa Wilson, in an attempt to foster a higher quality of education in the area. After visiting the school, Joe began to provide funds and educational materials to support the cause, which was the rudimentary start of OE. The success observed at Sotwa Wilson led Joe to produce DVDs based on the OE curriculum and expand the program to many other primary schools and countries. Overall, 465 primary schools were reached in Tanzania by OE materials.
In 2013, Opportunity Education considers the use of technology in the classroom to achieve academic goals. To test the feasibility of technology in Tanzania, OE initiates the Tablet Program, which provides 10 schools with tablets containing educational materials in English, mathematics, science, and history. The program continues for two years and in 2015, it was determined that technology can successfully be incorporated into developing country academics and the curricula needs address the distinct needs of the school. As of today, the curriculum for Quest Forward Learning schools is developed by Tanzanians to align with the national syllabus. There are seven Quest Forward Learning schools in Tanzania as of 2018, and there will be as many as 20 more added in the coming year.