Kickoff Meeting News
On 29 July 2021, Kenan collaborated with the Ministry of Education and Training (MOET) to organize the kickoff meeting to:
- Introduce the Technology Enhanced Learning in Vietnam 2021 Project to stakeholders.
- Introduce and build the relationship with all project’s partners.
- Discuss and approve the project’s implementation plan.
With the facilitation of Dr. Nguyen Xuan Thanh, Director-General of Secondary Education Department, MoET, the meeting has gathered representatives of Secondary Education Department, MoET; Mr. Pham Xuan Tien, Deputy Director of Hanoi Department of Education and Training (DoET); representatives of Bureaus of Education and Training (BoETs) of Ba Dinh District, Bac Tu Liem District, Cau Giay District, Dong Da District, Hai Ba Trung District, Hoan Kiem District, Long Bien District, Tay Ho District; Master teachers; representatives of 28 secondary schools in Hanoi. On the Kenan side, Mr. Richard Bernhard, Chief of Representative in Vietnam cum Executive Director of Kenan Foundation Asia, welcomed all project partners. Full participation from the project’s partners gives hope and expectation that we can build a strong foundation for making a better impact on STEM education in Vietnam.
Dr. Thanh, Director General of Secondary Education Department, shared in the meeting that: “According to the Prime Minister’s Directive 16, we are encouraged that STEM Education can meet the needs of the current and upcoming 4.0 Industrial Revolution. The Secondary Education Department (SED) was in charge of investigating and shaping the most suitable model for Vietnam. There were different efforts from MOET and other partners over the past five years in trial STEM Education projects. Thus, SED has accumulated experience and an understanding of the system and what needs to be done to improve STEM Education, especially in changing perceptions of STEM Education. SED and MOET need support in raising awareness that STEM Education should not be seen as a subject but a pedagogy which connects academic knowledge with real-life situations.”
The SED and MOET found that Kenan’s approach fits with what they are expecting from an experienced and trusted partner; Dr. Thanh continues: “A STEM lesson needs to ensure to follow a process that encourages students to follow and shape an engineering habit of mind using the approach identify, investigate, imagine, planing, discussing carefully before taking steps to create, test and improve. So that students can master the lesson knowledge and maintain their ideas for thinking and improving their design to solve real-world issues.”
After expressing sincere thanks to the MOET, SED, and Dr. Thanh, Mr. Richard Bernhard – Chief of Representative in Vietnam cum Executive Director of Kenan Foundation Asia shared:
“Dr. Thanh sharing is consistent with the philosophy that Kenan pursues while promoting STEM education in Thailand and Vietnam over the last ten years. Kenan has collaborated with leading STEM education universities in the U.S and Japan to share curriculum and learning practices of not only STEM content but also methodologies of teaching and learning. By participating in our project, teachers learn to always encourage students to take action themselves and accept any answers or questions without judgment. Then slowly change the way they plan for a lesson, from asking the student to read documents and watch the teacher executing the project to giving the student the space to follow the steps in the Engineering Design Process. Furthermore, by applying STEM Education, students will also have the chance to learn other 21st century skills: Communication, Collaboration, Critical thinking, and Creative thinking.”
However, Mr. Richard Bernhard emphasized that it will not transform overnight but through a consistent effort from all stakeholders, and Kenan is grateful to play a role in this fundamental transformation.
Listening to the project’s sharing, Hanoi Secondary Schools highly appreciated Kenan’s efforts and looked forward to participating in the project to enhance their capacity in STEM Education. They will also support the model of building up an ecosystem for STEM teachers, which they understand would bring motivation and technical support to the teachers. However, there are some difficulties in implementing the project raised by participants; namely the limitation of teacher capacity and the high turnover rate when contracting teachers.
In conclusion, the Head of Secondary Education Department and the Deputy Director of Hanoi Department of Education and Training both emphasized their support for the project and accentuated the methodical implementation. This requires consistency in managing, synchronization between the national, the municipality level, the district level, and the school level, and implementing with master teachers and teachers to discuss, develop on the agenda, training’s documents, and school lessons. The next step for the project will be the Master Teacher Training Course and School Teacher Training Courses.