Ekaterine Dgebuadze, Deputy Minister of Education, Science, Culture and Sport of Georgia held a presentation on system development vision of general education for media representatives.
According to Ekaterine Dgebuadze, the 2020-2021 academic year will move to a new stage of implementation, which will cover all public schools across Georgia by 2024. The Deputy Minister stated that with the involvement of experts, the implementation process, its strengths and weaknesses are constantly analyzed, and the resources and methodology needed for the project implementation are being refined.
The introduction of the "new school model" began in 2019 at 165 public schools, involving 34,000 students and 3096 teachers. Since the 2020 academic year, the project will cover about 300 schools and will involve 96,000 students and 8,000 teachers. The New School Model - This is a reform process going on in the classroom where each school builds its own individual school model based on the methodology shared by the experts. The reform that began in 2019 is the foundation on which the larger scale of the 2020-2021 academic year should be based on.
According to the Deputy Minister, the number of classes involved in the project has also increased. Until now, the "New School Model" was only for students and teachers of I-IV grades of elementary school, since February 2020 students and teachers of 5th to 9th grade have also been involved.
In order to implement the “New School Model” effectively throughout Georgia, decentralization of the process with the involvement of resource centers is planned. In particular, expert groups will be created by its corresponding regions. 23 workgroups of 14 subject experts will work at the resource center and will include specialists in elementary education, inclusive education and pre-school, in addition to subject matter professionals. Experts will be selected on the basis of the competitive interview and practical exams.
Moreover, implementation and development of technologies also play an important role. At this stage, 3474 laptops, 522 projectors and 77 charging cases have been delivered to schools.
It is also worth noting that the Ministry is developing a framework document for the systematic development of general education that will be finalized through the work of 12 groups of sectoral experts. Importantly, the document builds on the experience the ministry has gained from implementing the “new school model” in the initial 165 schools. Consequently, the concept of education reform begins in the classroom and involves both public school and resource centers as well as higher education institutions.
The application of the student-centered “New School Model” is a lively process involving children, teachers, school administrators, faculty members, parents and experts in the field. The student at school must acquire fundamental knowledge. They have to study and understand the material so deeply and substantially that he can critically analyze and relate to different life situations. The school environment should be person-centered, caring, harmonious, collaborative, compassionate and secure, allowing all teens to realize their full potential.
The “new school model” also includes assessing schools based on school culture and students' academic achievement. As a result, individual profiles of schools will be identified that show their strengths and weaknesses. Such assessments allow the school to see the real big picture and plan specific activities to overcome the challenges.