Microsoft to continue investment in global education program-A A +A
Thursday, September 26, 2013
MICROSOFT will be investing $250 million for a five-year renewal of its global education program Partners in Learning, education programs manager Clarissa Segismundo said Tuesday. The amount brings to $750 million the total investment since the program started 12 years back.
Microsoft’s Partners in Learning is a program in line with the company’s move to integrate information and communications technology (ICT) into the present educational system.
Segismundo said Microsoft has been conducting trainings for teachers worldwide to help them find new approaches to teaching and learning using technology.
In the Philippines, Microsoft is working with the Department of Education to provide free trainings to 100,000 teachers nationwide for the past eight years.
Microsoft also partnered with the Coalition for Better Education in Cebu to provide training on digital literacy.
In a speech delivered by Microsoft Philippines General Manager Karrie Ilagan last Tuesday in Quest Hotel, she said Microsoft has been investing in education because it believes that it will help “fuel economic growth.”
“We recognize quality education as critical to creating economic opportunities for individuals and communities. We want to inspire educators to use technology to foster
collaboration in order to create 21st century learning,” she said.
Ilagan said 21st century learning is equipping the youth the necessary skills, especially in ICT, to make them industry-ready when they graduate. The 21st century learning is also in line with the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization’s move on education.
Microsoft also partnered with publisher Vibal Group of Companies in 2012 for the latter’s launching of digital books.
Last Tuesday, Vibal Group of Companies president and chief executive officer Gus Vibal presented Vibe Reader and V-Smart to private school teachers who belong to the Catholic Educational Association of the Philippines’ affiliated institutions.
Vibe Reader is a universal eBook reader application connected to Vibal’s online bookstore, Vibe Bookstore. The reader is available for Windows, Android and iOS devices.
Vibal said there are already a hundred schools in the Philippines that have adopted Vibal’s technology.
V-Smart, on the other hand, is an “engaging” learning management system where Microsoft’s newly-launched cloud productivity suite Office 365 is incorporated.
Microsoft education lead David Tapang said Office 365 offers a free version that is good for students who want to access their files in any device, since it is adopting cloud service.
But unlike other services that offer cloud storage, Tapang said users can assure themselves that their files are safe.
“At Microsoft, we value your right to personal privacy. We assure you that we are not selling your data,” he said.
By next month, Microsoft will release a free update on Windows 8.1, said Ilagan.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on September 27, 2013.