26.08.2016 - UNESCO Office in Jakarta

UNESCO Organized the 1st Workshop on Flexible Learning Strategies Held in Timor-Leste

25 August 2016 - Dili, Timor-Leste

 

A two-day Workshop on Flexible Learning Strategies has concluded today which is attended by around 65 participants held at Hotel Timor in the capital city of Dili. The 1st Workshop on Flexible Learning Strategies is organized by UNESCO Jakarta Office in partnership with the Ministry of Education through its National Directorate for Recurrent Education, the national directorate dealing with the non-formal education in the country.

It is officially opened by the Director General of Pre-School, Basic Education and Recurrent Education, Mr. Cidalio Leite representing the Ministry of Education together with the Director of UNESCO Jakarta Office, Dr. Shahbaz Khan who is also the UNESCO Representative to Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, Brunei Darussalam and Timor-Leste. Mr. Miguel Godinho Martins, national director of the National Directorate for Recurrent Education of the Ministry of Education has welcomed the participants to the workshop participated by key officials of the MoE from the national level; Municipal Education Directors from the 12 municipalities, Administrative Post Administrators from 8 municipalities where the Community Learning Centers are currently operating; Development Partners both international, national/local NGOs; UN agencies relevant to education such as UNICEF, UNESCO in Dili, UN Women and UNFPA; and the media.

The main objective of the workshop, which is organized for the first time in the country on the subject, is to gather relevant stakeholders to undertake discussion and sharing on flexible learning strategies and learn from experiences of other countries in addressing the problem and issue of out-of-school children and youths in the country and come up with ideas and recommendations based from lessons learned from the workshop to feed into policy recommendations.

Five (5) topics were tackled during the 2-day workshop such as: Concept of Formal Education Flexible Learning Strategy and Equivalency to Formal Education Flexible Learning Strategy- Malaysian Country Experience; Flexible Learning Strategies in the Asia Pacific Region (Out-of School Children); Brief Presentation on the Situation of Out-of-School Children & Youths in Timor-Leste; Presentation on the National Equivalency Programme of Timor-Leste in the Context of Flexible Learning Strategies; and, Processes in strengthen the national system of certification to better support the Equivalency to Formal Education flexible learning system – Indonesian Country Experience.

Two (2) resource persons from countries such as Malaysia and Indonesia are invited to provide inputs to the participants on flexible learning strategies. Mr. Mohd Zahir Mohd Idris, the Assistant Director for Educational Planning and Research Division of the Ministry of Education of Malaysia shared the topic on the Concept of Formal Education Flexible Learning Strategy and Equivalency to Formal Education Flexible Learning Strategy; and Mr. Cecep Suryana, Head of Data & Information Sub-Division , Secretariat of the Directorate General of Early Childhood Education and Non-formal Education of the Ministry of Education and Culture in Indonesia delivered the topic on Processes in Strengthening the National System of Certification to better support the Equivalency to Formal Education flexible learning system- country experience of Indonesia. Other topics were delivered by the Director of the National Directorate for Recurrent Education of Ministry of Education of Timor-Leste, Mr. Miguel Godinho Martins and Mr. Remegio Alquitran, who is the UNESCO Consultant in Timor-Leste and at the same time the facilitator and moderator of the two-day workshop on flexible learning strategies.

In his speech, Director General Mr. Cidalio Leite mentioned that indeed, the problem of the out-of-school children and youths in the country is something that needs to be responded as soon as possible in order for all children and youths be able to access education as the country desires them to be in school and obtain education. He thanked UNESCO Jakarta Office for organizing such an important workshop which is the first time to be undertaken on the subject of flexible learning strategies. He appreciated the support of UNESCO for this will open doors in terms of understanding the concept and in responding to the issues of children and youths who are not in school and hoped that the result of the workshop will lead to developing some policies on the matter.

Meanwhile, Dr. Shahbaz Khan pointed out that the workshop is one of the mainline of actions of UNESCO within the framework of supporting Timor-Leste in advancing Education for All by promoting the right to education for out-of-school children and youths. Group discussions were carried out during the workshop after delivery of topics and towards the end, the participants identified some specific policy recommendations which are going to be submitted to the leadership of the Ministry of Education of Timor-Leste for further consideration through a report.




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