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UAE forges ahead with smart learning initiatives to boost global competitiveness

Adds eight more schools to its landmark “Mohammad Bin Rashid Smart Learning Programme” with full coverage of the public school system in the next four years. The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is aggressively pushing various smart learning initiatives aimed at improving global competitiveness, as the Ministerial Panel Discussion got underway at the opening of the Gulf Educational Supplies and Solutions (GESS) exhibition and Global Education Forum (GEF) at the Dubai World Trade Centre.

His Excellency Humaid Al Qatami delivered the opening address at the region’s largest educational exhibition, which was also attended by Ministers of Education from Saudi Arabia, Oman, Qatar, Bahrain and Yemen.

Al Qatami then announced that the UAE’s landmark “Mohammad Bin Rashid Smart Learning Programme”, launched in April 2012, will add eight more schools this year. “The ‘Mohammad Bin Rashid Smart Learning Program’ ensures a developed educational environment that uses interactive ICT technologies and helps in facilitating communication while developing the student’s performance level,” His Excellency added.

He then expressed his gratitude to His Highness Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, His Highness Sheikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, and Their Highnesses Supreme Council Members and Rulers of the Emirates, for keeping the education as a high priority in the UAE’s agenda.

Because of this high-level importance accorded the education sector in the UAE, the Ministry of Education has been able to implement a number of programmes aimed at modernizing and enhancing the educational system in the country. These include the e-library project in which the Ministry developed a digital library which comprises 11 thousand educational titles, available in both Arabic and English language. The Ministry also developed an electronic bag that is available now through the Apple Store and the Ministry’s website.

Dr Eesa Bastaki, Chair of this year’s edition of GEF, commended the Ministry for playing an important role in qualitatively transforming the educational system in the UAE into a very challenging and competitive educational system of smart schools using smart tools. “These kinds of initiatives play a very important role in the human capital development of the UAE,” he added.

Over the next two days, leading experts on smart learning and technological advances will continue to share their insights at various keynote presentations; while some of the world’s biggest providers of ICT and e-learning solutions, interactive technologies, scientific and laboratory equipment and a large range of other educational supplies will be showcasing their products and solutions at the GESS exhibition.

“The exhibition has become an important platform for providing education stakeholders throughout the region the full spectrum of smart learning tools and technological advances that will provide the necessary impetus for the education system to evolve and modernise and achieve the desired quality standards that are at par with the best in the world,” said Matt Thompson, Project Director, F&E Group, organisers of GESS.

Over the last six years, GESS and GEF have grown from strength to strength achieving the status of the biggest and most prestigious educational exhibition in the region. The 2013 edition registered a 14% growth overall, welcoming more than 300 exhibitors from over 30 countries.
The full programme of activities for GESS and GEF 2013 is available on www.gesseducation.com. Live updates on proceedings will be made via social media, follow @GESSeducation on Twitter.