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The Minister of Education, Science, Culture and Sport of Georgia, Mikheil Chkhenkeli hosted the Minister of European Neighborhood and Americas of the United Kingdom, Wendy Morton, who paid a working visit to Georgia, and discussed the issues of deepening cooperation between the two countries.
Mikheil Chkhenkeli thanked the guest for several important and fruitful projects implemented in the field of education between Georgia and the United Kingdom and especially underlined the work of the British Council in Georgia, which contributes to the further enhancement of relations between the two countries in the field of education, science and culture.
At the meeting, the parties shared their experience in ensuring a continuous education process in light of Covid-19 pandemic. Mikheil Chkhenkeli noted that on February 15, students throughout the country returned to their natural environment – to classrooms.
Additionally, Mikheil Chkhenkeli informed the guest about two current world-class mega-projects in the field of higher education and science - Kutaisi International University and Hadron Therapy Center. According to the Minister, the university is developing in accordance with European standards of education. The academic programs at the University are analogous to those of the University of Munich. In the coming years, it is planned to introduce new educational programs based on the academic programs of the world's leading universities for all three levels of education. The development of science will be facilitated by the Hadron Therapy Center, which will conduct research in nuclear experimental physics, radiation biophysics and chemistry. Mikheil Chkhenkeli noted that the involvement of foreign professors in the academic life of Kutaisi International University is important. Foreign professors give lectures here together with Georgian professors. In addition, foreign scientists have already expressed readiness to participate in the scientific-research process of the Hadron Therapy Center together with Georgian specialists. The Minister said that Kutaisi International University is ready to implement joint scientific projects with other British universities and to introduce various academic programs.
Minister noted that the idea and concept of the university belongs to Mr. Bidzina Ivanishvili. As a result of his and his family's extremely important contribution, a worldwide academic and scientific-research space emerged in the country. The Hadron Therapy Center was also fully funded by the Cartu Foundation.
During the meeting with Wendy Morton, a tripartite cooperation agreement was signed between the Ministry of Education, Science, Culture and Sport, the British Council, and the National Center for Teacher Professional Development, and based on the agreement, a unified electronic platform "e-Education House" will be created. The platform will offer teachers a variety of resources for continuous professional development.
Within the scope of such partnership, the British Council and its partners will pilot an 18-month English-language online community of English teachers and work on the British Council's Future English Online Teacher Community platform, which will be accessible to 6,500 English teachers in Georgia. Teachers will be given the opportunity to form trade unions at both the national and international levels. The platform will also help them to regularly participate in various forums and webinars, to share new ideas, knowledge, and experience online.