Ahead of the fall semester, the Ministry of Education Oman and Intel® Corporation have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to introduce the 'Intel® Teach Program' into the Omani education plans. This professional development training program is seen as an important step to provide teachers with 21st Century teaching and learning skills, enabling educators to integrate appropriate information and communication technology in to the classroom.
The signing took place under the patronage of His Excellency Yahya bin Saud Al Sulaimi Minister of Education Oman, and Samir Al Schamma, Intel's Regional Director for the Middle East and North Africa, and was witnessed by top educators, and government officials. During the ceremony His Excellency also presented Graduation Certificates to local teachers who have already taken and pass the course, graduating as Senior Trainers.
Commenting on the benefits of the agreement, His Excellency stated, "Working with companies such as Intel is paramount to enhancing our education infrastructure. We have a thriving youthful population and it is important that we provide them the necessary skills to compete in today's interconnected world. Technology is a fundamental component of society and it is vital for educators to ensure our students are equipped with IT skills from an early age."
Under the MoU, Intel will work closely with the Ministry to train 45,000 teachers during the course of the next 5 years. Participating teachers receive extensive instruction and resources to promote effective technology use in the classroom. They also learn how, when, and where to incorporate technology tools and resources into their lesson plans. Teachers are set to experience new approaches to create assessments and align lessons with educational learning goals and standards. The program also incorporates use of the Internet, Web page design, and student projects as vehicles to powerful learning.
"By equipping the Omani education system with the latest tools, mechanisms and expertise to facilitate the development of a 21st Century knowledge economy we are empowering the next generation of leaders," added, Samir Al Schamma, Intel's Regional Director for the Middle East and North Africa. "As part of Intel's global strategy we are committed to helping bridge the digital divide, placing education at the forefront of our agenda.
"The 'Intel Teach Program' is a professional development program to help both experienced teachers as well as pre-service teachers to integrate technology into their classrooms. This helps educators enhance students' learning, and aids them develop students 21st Century skills such as; collaboration, communication and higher-level critical thinking skills."
As part of the agreement Intel will also work alongside the Omani Ministry of Education to develop student's scientific research ability to encourage and nurture their interest in scientific discovery and innovation.
As part of the initiative to encourage scientific discovery Intel will be organizing a local Science Competition next year. The event is set to act as a platform for talented students to compete at Intel's global International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) which is held annually in the United States.