Interaction with the Ministry of Education
January 18, 2017 | Kathmandu
Open Learning Exchange (OLE) Nepal’s team led by Executive Director, Mr. Rabi Karmacharya and Senior Manager, Mr. Tikaraj Karki, held a meeting with officials of Nepal’s Department of Education (DoE) on Wednesday, January 18 at Kathmandu, regarding the organization’s work on promoting the use of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) in Education so far, and to discuss the way forward.
In the meeting, the officials were briefed about the curriculum-based interactive digital content — E-Paath, and free digital library — E-Pustakalaya, developed and maintained by OLE Nepal. The meeting, held in Gairidhara, Kathmandu, served as an official brief of OLE Nepal’s program to the new Secretary of MoE and the Directors of all 5 REDs. During the presentation by Mr. Karki of OLE Nepal, the officials were updated about the organization’s previous and current projects. Participants included:
|1||Mr. Shanta Bahadur Shrestha||Secretary||Ministry of Education|
|2||Mr. Babu Ram Poudel||Director General||Department of Education|
|3||Ms. Dev Kumari Guragai||Executive Director||National Centre for Education Development (NCED)|
|4||Mr. Krishna Prasad Kapri||Executive Director||Curriculum Development Centre (CDC)|
|5||Mr. Ana Prasad Neupane||Director||Education Management Division|
|6||Mr. Dinesh Shrestha||Director||Central Region Education Directorate|
|7||Mr. Bishnu Prasad Adhikari||Director||Western Region Education Directorate|
|8||Mr. Keshav Prasad Dahal||Director||Eastern Region Education Directorate|
|9||Mr. Dharma Jeet Shahi||Director||Mid-Western Region Education Directorate|
|10||Mr. Lal Jung Chauhan||Director||Far-Western Region Education Directorate|
|11||Mr. Kesari Raman Neupane||Deputy Director||DoE’s I/NGO and Volunteer Coordination Section|
|12||Mr. Arjun Dhakal||Section Officer||Department of Education|
OLE Nepal was founded in 2007 and launched its first laptop project in 2009 in partnership with the DoE, and also worked with Nepal’s Ministry of Education (MoE) to develop the ICT in Education Master Plan, which includes four major components — infrastructure, connectivity, teaching learning materials and human resource development. Since its launch, OLE has developed over 600 modular interactive digital activities that are approved by the Curriculum Development Centre (CDC), and launched a free digital library with a growing collection of books, learning softwares, apps and audio-visual materials. To ensure that teachers are able to seamlessly integrate these digital learning materials, OLE Nepal has developed and delivered teacher training package with the approval of NCED. On the technology front, OLE has deployed over 5,000 energy efficient durable laptops for primary school students in the remote parts of Nepal, with the support of partners and donors. While the interactive digital content are currently being used in over 200 schools across 34 districts in Nepal, OLE Nepal is currently working towards nationwide distribution of the curriculum-based digital content (E-Paath) through the existing 1053 Resource Centers across Nepal.
The presentation by Mr. Karki was followed by a discussion session with the government officials. Secretary Shrestha stated that while efforts of the organisation in developing relevant curriculum-based content and digital library were commendable, he was concerned that the content was not more widely used. Shrestha was positive about the distribution and use of E-Paath in schools across the Nepal through the distribution of E-Paath software CDs. He added that, creating apps and using learning software, like E-Paath, on mobile devices and tablets would be beneficial for students in this day and age, when most students have access to such low-cost devices. Ms. Guragain of the NCED also added that, it would be beneficial to have the digital content (E-Paath) at the DoE offices to present to visiting teachers and school representatives. After the discussion session, the officials were provided with E-Paath software CDs.
The meeting was an important event in laying the groundwork for the large scale distribution of E-Paath content for grades 2-8. With all 5 Directors of the REDs briefed about the plan, OLE Nepal will prepare for the distribution and training of Resource Persons, when the final version of the software is ready to be distributed. Currently, grade 2-6 digital content is being reviewed and updated to new software platform. When the update is complete, OLE Nepal will prepare over 5300 CDs to be distributed to schools across Nepal through the Resource Centres under the different Regional Education Directorates.