Moroccan Program 'GENIE' Wins UNESCO King Hamad Bin Isa Al-Khalifa Prize
The Moroccan program GENIE (Generalization of information and communication technologies in education) won, Wednesday in Paris, the 2017 UNESCO King Hamad Bin Isa Al-Khalifa Prize for the use of information and communication technologies in education.
The Prize was presented to minister of National Education, Vocational Training, Higher Education and Scientific research, Said Amzazi, at an official ceremony, held at UNESCO Headquarters.
On the sidelines of the ceremony, Amzazi held a meeting with director-general of UNESCO, Audrey Azoulay.
The 2017 edition of the UNESCO King Hamad bin Isa Al-Khalifa Prize for the Use of ICTs in Education was also awarded to the Connected Learning Initiative (CLIX) program, which is developed by the Tata Institute of Social Sciences, leverages ICTs to improve the chances of students from underserved communities to access secondary and higher education in India.
The GENIE program, which aims to integrate information and communication technologies to improve access and quality of education in primary and secondary schools, has been designated by UNESCO's Director General for based on the recommendations of an international jury composed of international experts. It was chosen from nearly 700 projects.
Launched in 2005, GENIE is a large-scale, long-term national policy and initiative developed and implemented by the ministry of National Education and Vocational Training, Higher Education and Scientific Research of Morocco. It aims to incorporate ICT to improve access to, and quality of, education in primary and secondary schools. It incorporates key pillars for an effective national ICT in education policy such as infrastructure, teacher training, development of digital resources and transformation of teaching and learning practices.
It has provided infrastructure, digital devices and internet connectivity to more than 10,000 schools, and has promoted pedagogical innovations by providing more than 300,000 teachers and school administrators across the country with in-service training. It fosters the creative use of ICT to ensure an inclusive access to quality education in every school in the country and covers the four main languages used in education (Amazigh, Arabic, English and French). It has contributed to the increase of school enrollment in the country to 95% and works to increase its implementation so as to reduce the school dropout rate by 53%.
The UNESCO King Hamad Bin Isa Al-Khalifa ICT in Education Prize recognizes innovative approaches in leveraging new technologies to expand educational opportunities by enabling access to quality education and lifelong learning opportunities for all, in line with the Education 2030 agenda and Sustainable Development Goal 4.
Funded by the Kingdom of Bahrain and established in 2005, the Prize rewards individuals and organizations that are carrying out outstanding projects to improve teaching and learning in the digital age.
An international Jury selects two best projects annually. Each prizewinner receives a diploma, USD 25,000 and acknowledgement during a ceremony at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris.