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Accelerating Safe School Implementation towards Regional Excellence in Myanmar

A one-day National Level Consultation Workshop on Safe Schools as part of ASEAN Safe School Initiative was organized jointly by the Ministry of Education, UNESCO and Plan International on 13 March 2013.

Deputy Minister of Education delivering an opening address (© UNESCO/Myint Myint San)

The opening ceremony was held at the Hotel Amara in Nay Pyi Taw at 9 am, with an address by H.E. Dr Myo Myint, Deputy Minister of Education. In addition to the Secretary-General, Myanmar National Commission for UNESCO, officials from Ministry of Education, Ministry of Construction, Ministry of Health, Ministry of Science and Technology, Ministry of Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement, UN Agencies, INGOs and LNGOs participated in the workshop.     

In his opening address, the Deputy Minister said ”The Ministry of Education considers this workshop an important initiative as Myanmar is situated in a natural disaster prone region and was one of the countries in the region most affected by natural disasters. … It is very timely as it coincides with the Government’s renewed commitment to raise the quality of education to international standard and promote better access to education in all parts of Myanmar. …the Ministry of Education is focusing on free compulsory primary education and improvement of school facilities including building of additional schools, improvement of classrooms and renovation of old schools...” 

The workshop covered the three pillars of comprehensive school safety: school buildings and facilities, school disaster management, and disaster risk reduction education. During the consultation workshop, representatives from the Ministry of Education, UNESCO, Plan International, SEEDS Asia, and the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation made presentations on safe school implementation with reference to Myanmar, India, Japan, Indonesia, Cambodia and Philippines in the Asia and Pacific Region and shared experiences, information and ideas. All presentations were followed by Q & A session and discussion on challenges, opportunities and ways and means to scale up the implementation of safer schools activities.