Four schools and eight teachers from across Sub-Saharan Africa have been nominated as part of Microsoft’s 2014 class of Mentor Schools and the Inaugural Class of Expert Educators.
The nominations recognise visionary educators who are using technology to equip student outcomes and new generation skills as well as teachers who demonstrate effective use of technology in learning.
The four nominated schools were chosen from more than 250 applicants globally, from 80 countries, including Nigeria’s government secondary school Jabi, Gayanza High School in Uganda, SARM state secondary school, Mauritius, and Aga Khan secondary school, Kenya.
Djam Bakhshandegi, director of corporate citizenship and partners in learning for West, East, Central Africa and Indian Ocean islands, education encouraging innovation is the key to success of modern society.
“At Microsoft, we strongly believe in the role that well-prepared educators play in helping today’s youth overcome the emerging opportunity divide and guiding them toward the education, skills and opportunities they need to prosper in the hyper-connected era,” Bakhshandegi said.
Among the educators there are eight teachers, three from Nigeria, two from Kenya and one each from Uganda, Senegal and Mauritius.
The eight were awarded expert educator status and will attend the Microsoft in Education Global Forum, in Barcelona, Spain, in March next year.
According to Djam, the forum is a hallmark educator recognition initiative and has been hailed by educators as one of the best professional development experiences of their careers.
“The goal is to showcase and celebrate amazing educators and schools who are positively impacting student learning,” said Djam.
Microsoft said the winners in the initiative will be able to collaborate with other leaders and ultimately create a vision for their school community.
The class of expert educators and teachers will also be heavily involved in advising Microsoft on innovation in education and provide insights on new products and tools to help the company understand how technology works, or does not work, in the daily classroom.
The educator and schools programme is part of a 10 year Partners in Learning initiative that Microsoft has been involved in helping teachers and schools from around the world improve students’ experiences and skills through technology with over US$750 million committed to date reaching 12 million educators and 13 million students from 134 countries.