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The Minister of Education and Science of Georgia, Mikheil Chkhenkeli participated in an online ministerial organized by UNESCO. At its core, the Ministerial aimed to share various steps taken by the countries to ensure education continuity and its digital transformation.
The Ministerial was opened by UNESCO Director-General - Audrey Azoulay, who noted that since the pandemic began, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization has facilitated political dialogue and sharing of experience, helping countries to overcome challenges.
Mikheil Chkhenkeli: “It is a great honour to participate in the Ministerial this year. One year into the pandemic, and we can safely say, that the crisis caused by Covid-19 virus turned out to be a great challenge for almost all governments. At the same time, the crisis pushed out education systems to introduce innovative approaches, and to heavily use modern technologies. And most importantly, this crisis has shown us the need and the paramount importance of global cooperation.”
The Minister noted that in the process of crisis management, the Georgian education system has been able to successfully adapt to the new reality and move to a remote format. A variety of online resources have been created in an accelerated mode. It is noteworthy that the educational project - "TV School" started in cooperation with the First Channel.
According to Mikheil Chkhenkeli, the success of the educational process largely depends on the digital transformation of education and, in general, the growing role of technology and its practical application. In order to develop the skills of the 21st century among young people, the process of introducing the Microsoft educational program "Minecraft Education Edition" is actively underway at Georgian schools.
Moreover, the Minister emphasized that Georgia's efforts in introducing distance learning is recognized by international organizations. The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) has named the steps taken by the Georgian government as the best example among 98 countries. Georgia's response has also been praised by Microsoft and UNICEF.
Furthermore, in his speech, Mikheil Chkhenkeli emphasized, that the pandemic truly accelerated change, created a new agenda and gave impetus to the education system, in conjunction with increasing the use of ICT in teaching, introducing more innovation and thus making education more inclusive and accessible.
The UNESCO Ministerial was addressed by the Secretary-General of the United Nations, ministers from around the world, representatives of the World Health Organization, the United Nations Department of Education and Science, and professors from Harvard University.