The Microsoft Incorporation in partnership with the Bayelsa State Ministry of Education and Technology Innovation for Teenagers Foundation (TECHTEEN) organized a two day education transformation workshop for permanent secretaries, directors, heads of agencies and parastatals and special advisers in the educational sector.
The workshop which commenced on November 29 , 2018 was held at the Glory Drive resort, Onopa in Yenagoa, the Bayelsa State capital.
Declaring the workshop open, the Secretary to the State Government, Barr. Kemela Okara who represented the Bayelsa State Governor said today’s collaboration is a collaboration with a company that has exemplified and stood out in the technological landscape, adding that Microsoft is one of the companies that has changed history in the last 43years.
The Governor stressed that the ways and pace of change that technology has introduced in short periods of time cannot be compared to any other time in the history of mankind, noting that the world we are today is a technology driven world
He said, “For those of you who are to be part of the two day workshop, we cannot have a better partner, a better facilitator for this workshop especially as we are looking at transforming education delivery .
“Aside from infrastructure, we are now thinking of what happens in terms of teachers, in terms of the students, in terms of the take away for the children, in terms of how they can be leaders of tomorrow, we cannot underemphasized the importance this two day workshop.
“I want to thank Microsoft for this collaboration and I want to enjoin all of you to take these next two days seriously”.
The Commissioner for Education, Hon. Jonathan Obuebite said Bayelsa State is among the three states in the federation and the only state in South-south that Microsoft is working with trying to better the educational system of the country.
He said the program is organized for policy makers and administrators in the education sector. .
“These two days program will prepare you for the task ahead, these two days training will open us to understand the global practices of how we can effectively run our education system. These two days training will also prepare you to know how to run the new policies we have introduced in the system. Our children, our students are supposed to be the ultimate beneficiaries of whatever we are bring in the educational sector”, Obuebite said.
The Education Leader, Microsoft Nigeria, Mr. Olusola Amusun said that Microsoft has a global mission which is to empower every person and every organization in the planet to achieve more.
He said with close to four decades experience in putting personal computer on the desk of everyone around the world with billions of people connected, “we know we have more work to do across the continent of Africa”.
“And one of the ways to make this change as we prepare the next one billion people for the 21st century transformation that is going on is to take care of education and approach this in a very pragmatic and strategic way.
This is not a program we are doing in all states of Nigeria. We said let’s make a few states the centre of excellence that we can show to the world, to the rest of Africa and indeed to the rest of the world what it means to be able to transform the education sector.
Amusun further disclosed that it is not the first time that Microsoft is doing something like this in Bayelsa State, saying a few months ago, they were able to train 2000 students and 350 teachers in partnership with Techteens.
“We wanted to use this to find out what the appetite for growth and development is in Bayelsa State, particularly as it relates to technology emancipation and we were blown away.
“We were blown away by the openness and commitment of the state government to transform the entire educational infrastructure in the state in terms of policies to change the way in learning delivery and classroom management. This state is one of the forward thinking states in Nigeria”, he said.
The Coordinator of Techteen, Mrs. Chichi Okafor said technology has the ability to enhance relationships between teachers and students.
She said as educators, we need to keep up with the times in order to best prepare our students for this dynamic world that we live in, saying technology changes by the minute.
Mrs. Okafor disclosed that Techteen will work with the state government to transform the current set of model schools, train teachers on how to use Microsoft Education offerings like Office 365 and Window 10 and also deploy Office 365 for over 10,000 students and teachers across Bayelsa.