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The Ministry of Education and EKSP Partners with Microsoft on National IT Literacy Initiative


Company funds school IT literacy project worth Rs.100 million


The Ministry of Education and EKSP Partners with Microsoft on National IT Literacy Initiative


Caption:

“Empowering education with ICT” the Partners in Learning addendum exchanged – From Left: Mrs. Yashinka Jayasinghe Alles Academic Programmes Manager, Microsoft, Mr. Sriyan de Silva Wijeyeratne handing the Partners in Learning addendum the to Minister of Education, Hon. Susil Premjayanth and Mr. Anura Dissanayake , Project Director SEMP II and EKSP


Microsoft Sri Lanka announced that the company will be supporting the Ministry of Education through Education for Knowledge Society Project (EKSP) further in the coming 12-15 months with a grant of Rupees Hundred Million which will go towards the installation of 400 Multipoint technology enabled classrooms across the country.


The Partners in Learning addendum was handed to the Minister of Education, Hon. Susil Premjayanth by Microsoft Sri Lanka’s Country Manager, Mr. Sriyan de Silva Wijeyeratne and Mr. Anura Dissanayake , Project Director SEMP II and EKSP at the Innovative Teachers and Students winners National Awards ceremony held recently at the BMICH.


Addressing the gathering Minister of Education, Hon. Susil Premjayanth stated, “We are happy to be a part of an initiative with a vision to empower the future generations of our country, an initiative that is directly in line with His Excellency the President’s vision for the Year of English and IT. We take this opportunity to thank Microsoft Sri Lanka for coming forward with this kind of investment which will be towards an initiative that will empower those who hold the key to the future – our children”.


Microsoft and the Ministry of Education will provide training to teachers in the schools to which Multipoint has been allocated, on the usage of Multipoint technology. In addition, apart from the company‘s efforts with the Innovative Teachers and Students competition, Microsoft Sri Lanka has decided to initiate a new program “Innovative Kids” aimed at the primary sections of schools. This new segment of the competition is designed to encourage those children who receive early access to IT to adapt and build on what they have learned, and the exposure they have gained.


“Through this National Partnership with the Ministry of Education and the Education for Knowledge Society Project, Microsoft Sri Lanka will open a brand new door within the education system in Sri Lanka. The Government of Sri Lanka‘s declaration of 2009 as the ‘Year of English and Information Technology’ laid the foundation for the IT revolution in this country, and I am proud to say that we have been able to launch a series of initiatives this year that we believe will further the dissemination, access and uptake of IT throughout our island nation. At Microsoft we believe technology can expand the power of education and unlock the potential of students, educators and schools. We partner with education communities around the world to deliver relevant solutions, services and programs that focus on improved personalized learning outcomes. The delivery of Multipoint technology to 400 schools in Sri Lanka is a major local initiative that we are sure will have far reaching, long term benefits and effects” stated Microsoft Sri Lanka Country Manager, Mr. Sriyan de Silva Wijeyeratne.


He added that in addition the company will also provide schools with access to developer and designer software providing unlimited access for the students to explore the world of IT.


The Microsoft Multipoint platform is part of Microsoft‘s commitment to expanding the benefits of technology to underserved communities. Microsoft MultiPoint enables one computer to serve many students simultaneously. Using multiple computer mice that drive uniquely-designed on-screen cursors, Microsoft MultiPoint allows 3 to 30 students to simultaneously use and learn from educational software on one computer. This not only offers a more affordable solution, it also creates an active, collaborative learning experience that engages each and every student.


For many schools, providing one computer per student is simply not an affordable option. MultiPoint can be used in a computer lab with a small group working on a student controlled application. It can also be applied in a classroom with a large number of students participating while a teacher controls the application. Microsoft is currently working with independent software vendors to develop educational software using the Microsoft MultiPoint platform.