National forum for educators, young civil society actors and journalists on education for peace and dialogue values (10-11/12/2013)
The national forum for educators, young civil society actors and journalists on education for peace and dialogue values was inaugurated in the presence of the Secretary General of the Lebanese National Commission for UNESCO, Dr. Zahida Darwiche Jabbour, the representative of the Islamic Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (ISESCO) and expert at ISESCO Regional Office in Sharjah Dr. Abdelaziz Hamid Al-Jabouri, and the external expert of the forum and professor of Social and Human Sciences at the Hashemite University of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, Dr. Jamal Shalabi, as well as the Director of the UNESCO Regional Office in Beirut Dr. Hamad Seif Al Hammami, and participants and a number of representatives of media, academic and civil society institutions.
The Forum mainly aimed at highlighting the role of educators, youth, civil society and journalists in promoting the culture of dialogue and coexistence between different segments of society; at establishing a national framework for the coordination and future cooperation between the institutions of civil society in order to consolidate a culture of dialogue, coexistence and peace in the community; and at submitting proposals for educational, cultural and media projects on mechanisms to promote the values of dialogue, coexistence and peace in society.
In celebration of the World Philosophy Day, the Lebanese National Commission for UNESCO organized under the patronage of H.E. the Minister of Culture Mr. Gaby Layoun a seminar on "Philosophy as a necessity in the contemporary Arab world”, moderated by the Executive Board Member of the Commission Dr. Nassif Azzi, and with the participation of Dr. Walid Khoury from the Lebanese University, Dr. Hoda Nehme - Dean of the Faculty of Philosophy and Humanities at the University of Saint Esprit de Kaslik and Dr. Marlene Najjar from the University of Balamand.
Validation national workshop on “Assessment of the Level of Inclusiveness of Public Policies with regards to young men and women living with disabilities in Lebanon” (Four Points Hotel – Sheraton, 26/10/2013)
The Lebanese National Commission for UNESCO jointly with UNESCO Office in Beirut organized a one-day national workshop which aimed to validate the assessment of the Level of Inclusiveness of Public Policies in Lebanon prepared by Mrs. Sawsan Mahdi.
The national workshop hosted around 45 participants coming from the Ministry of Education, Ministry of Social Affairs, various educational institutions, experts and concerned NGOs.
Mrs Sawsan Mahdi presented the Assessment of the Level of Inclusiveness of Public Policies with regards to young men and women living with disabilities in Lebanon. In the second session, participants were split into two groups to discuss four questions:
1- What are the steps required to enable the National Council for the disabled persons to assume its responsibilities according to the 220 law?
2- What are the main reasons that prevent the participation of young people with disabilities in decision-making related to their issues, and what are the steps should be taken to activate their role?
3- Is it time to amend the 220 law and what are the most important topics that must be modified or added to the law?
4- How could you evaluate the educational inclusion initiatives that took place in Lebanon last years and on different levels and what are the most important gaps that can be recorded?
Debate followed in a plenary session conducted by Mr. Ibrahim Abdallah, president of the National Council for Disabled Persons – Ministry of Social Affairs.
The UNESCO Regional Office in Beirut in cooperation with the Lebanese National Commission for UNESCO organized a seminar in celebration of the Global Action Week for Education for All, during which awards for the winning schools of the video footage contest were distributed, in the presence of the Director-General of the Ministry of Education Mr. Fadi Yarak – representing the Minister of Education and Higher Education, as well as representatives of Lebanese schools and education NGOs.
After the national anthem and the welcome word by Ms. Christiane Jeitani – National Coordinator of UNESCO Associated Schools and Clubs, the allocution of the UNESCO Regional Office Director Dr. Hamad Al Hamami was presented by Dr. Said Belkachla, who said: "two years separate us from the year 2015, deadline of the selected program to achieve quality education for all", adding that "not everything planned was achieved”. “There are 61 million children worldwide in primary education out of schools, in addition to 70 million at the average age, and equal numbers of children are enrolled in schools, but are not as fluent in reading and writing as they should be". He related the lack of quality of education to the limited number of teachers, pointing to "the need to provide 725 thousand teacher jobs in the Arab world to ensure the completion of the EFA plan".
In her allocution, the Secretary General of the Lebanese National Commission for UNESCO, Dr. Zahida Darwiche Jabbour noted that "the Global Week for Education for All celebrated annually by UNESCO between 21 and 27 of April, is an occasion to highlight the projects and achievements and to monitor the obstacles and impediments that prevent the attainment of the goals elaborated by the EFA plan approved by the World Education Forum in Dakar in 2000, among which: expanding and improving comprehensive early childhood care and education; ensuring that by 2015 all children have access to and complete free and compulsory primary education of good quality; ensuring that the learning needs of all young people and adults are met; achieving a 50 per cent improvement in levels of adult literacy, especially for women; and eliminating gender disparities”.
Quoting the UNESCO Director-General Mrs. Irina Bokova, Dr. Jabbour highlighted “the crucial role of teachers as the single most influential and powerful force for equity, access and quality in education. In an era of information accessibility due to the technological revolutions, teachers are not solely carriers of knowledge. Rather, their role is to form the mind to critical thinking, develop an independent identity and build on the pre-existing skills of the students; which entails of course preparation and training, and perhaps also a drive from within that makes the task of education an act of love and commitment”.
As for Mr. Fadi Yarak, he noted that "the quality education for all has become an obsession at the ministry, and it is a project we look forward to achieve in collaboration with UNESCO", adding that, "the teachers are the backbone of every project of education, and the lack of an efficient teacher would lead to the failure of any educational plan or project", and stressing the importance of annual educational trainings and the positive impact of the continuous training approved by the ministry. He pointed out that "the preparation, continuous training of faculty members and the improvement of their teaching methods are parts of a promotion plan in the EFA plan".
The five winning schools of the video footage contest were: Al Hadi Institute for Deaf and Blind; Al Makassed Philanthropic Islamic Association of Beirut - Ali Bin Abi Taleb School; Al Shajra Middle School – Al Bus Camp (Tyre); Antonine International School – Ajaltoun; Marj Bin Amer School – Ain al-Hilweh Camp (Saida).
The 17th meeting of the Secretaries Generals of the Arab National Commissions for Education, Culture and Science, was opened under the patronage and presence of H.E. Minister of Culture Mr. Gaby Layoun and the Director-General of the Arab Organization for Education, Culture and Science (ALECSO) Dr. Abdallah Hamad Mouhareb, and Mr. Amer Maraachli Secretary General of ALECSO Executive Board and General Conference, the Representative of Lebanon at the Executive Board of the organization Dr. Hicham Nachabe, Advisor of the Egyptian embassy Khaled Anis, and the Director General of the UNESCO Beirut Office t Dr. Hamad Al-Hammami.
The meeting was attended by Secretaries Generals and representatives of various Arab commissions from Jordan, United Arab Emirates, Tunisia, Djibouti, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Somalia, Iraq, Oman, Palestine, Kuwait, Egypt, Morocco, Mauritania and Yemen.
The session was chaired by the Republic of Lebanon, being the host country. Thus, Dr Zahida Darwiche Jabbour, Secretary General of the Lebanese National Commission has been appointed President, and Dr. Ali Mehad Al-Suwaidi, Acting Director General of the UAE Ministry of Education as vice president, Dr. Touria Majdouline Secretary General of the Moroccan National Commission as general rapporteur, with Dr. Ahmad Maamari, General Secretary of the Yemeni National Commission and Mr. Mohammed Bin Salim Al-Yaacoubi, Secretary General of the National Commission of the Sultanate of Oman in the drafting committee.
During the meeting that lasted two days, participants discussed the recommendations drafted at the 16th meeting of the Secretaries Generals of National Commissions, the draft budget and program budget session of 2015-2016, and the reports submitted by the organization on projects implemented or being implemented.
This meeting was an opportunity to strengthen the ties between the Arab Commissions on one hand, and with ALECSO on the other.
Workshop on "Assessment of the level of inclusiveness of public policies with regards to young men and women living with disabilities in Lebanon" (02/04/2013)
The Lebanese National Commission for UNESCO organized a national workshop under the patronage of H.E. Mr. Wael Abou Faour, Minister of Social Affairs and in collaboration with the UNESCO Beirut Office, on “Assessment of the Level of Inclusiveness of Public Policies with regards to young men and women living with disabilities in Lebanon”.
The workshop was designed within the framework of the UNESCO objective to support Member States in their efforts to create more inclusive, just and equitable societies through the integration of the social inclusion objective as an overreaching theme in all main national policy areas. Participants included representatives of ministries, UN agencies, governmental and non-governmental organizations, universities as well as private sector foundations, companies and industries.
- Ceremony "Crossing" on the occasion of the World Poetry Day (24/03/2013)
- Exhibition “Le français par les jeux” on the occasion of the International Day of the Francophonie (21/03/2013, Presidency of the Lebanese University - Museum)
- Seminar "Youth Language, Language of Youth" (Presidency of the Lebanese University - Museum, 21/02/2013)
- Seminar on “Philosophy and Justice” (21/11/2012)