Moscow electronic school presented to educators

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The President of Education Malta, Charles Zammit, and I were recently invited to participate in the Moscow World Forum “City of Education” held in the Russian capital. During this forum we had the opportunity to observe and learn more about one of the country’s main initiatives in the field of education – the Moscow Electronic School. The project, which was launched as a pilot project three years ago and involves all schools in the Russian capital, has the full support of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

I was very impressed with how this e-school facilitates learning for all students and how it serves as a communication bridge between education authorities, educators and all other stakeholders. It has been designed in a way to help create a high tech educational environment. It aims to improve the quality of education and also tries to balance traditional school methods with modern digital technology.

In one of the meetings we attended, it was stated that at present over 1,000 schools in Moscow are using the new version of electronic school records. Statistically, this means that more than a million people use the Moscow electronic school, because more than 400,000 students and 550,000 parents use the electronic registration system and more than 50,000 teachers use the electronic register system.

The Moscow E-School provides an educational profile for each student and also includes tools and a link to the city’s online educational materials, the online school attendance system, lesson plans prepared by various teachers and other resources. Teachers who download their resources and lessons are rewarded financially and have other incentives. Apart from this, electronic school records allow parents to observe their child’s progress, achievements and interests, as well as information about the curriculum that children are taking in their respective schools.

The Moscow Electronic School also includes tools and sections that facilitate integration with the city’s online educational materials. This initiative has also resulted in investment in education in general, particularly in IT infrastructure. In fact, more than 19,000 interactive panels and more than 45,000 Wi-Fi points have been installed in 1,360 schools. They also received over 1,300 servers with teachers having the ability to use over 40,000 desktops.

The electronic registration and gradebook system is accessible to parents and other stakeholders not only through the official website, but also through the mobile application of the Moscow government services. Indeed, according to official information provided during the forum, around 1.5 million people use this service, with an average of 750,000 users each week. The mobile application is used by more than 34,000 teachers or by more than 50% of the total number of educators.

Teachers who download their resources and courses are rewarded financially and have other incentives

Moscow Electronic School also includes a digital library, which offers interactive content for teachers and students. Some educators and senior managers have indicated that teachers can choose the best lesson plans or prepare their own lessons using the platform, they can also upload unique content to the library. Teachers are active in creating the required content and adapting it to the educational process.

Thanks to the direct involvement of educators, the library has approximately 27,000 interactive lesson scenarios, 388,000 units of individual content, 14,700 educational applications, 291 electronic textbooks, 640 teaching aids and 200 electronic editions of fiction books. It also contains subject testing tasks, virtual labs, tests and test items, and fiction books.

The mayor of Moscow, Sergei Sobyanin, has confirmed his intention to make the library of this innovative school accessible free of charge to teachers and parents around the world. Moscow education authorities are ready to share their experience in setting up an e-school with foreign partners. In fact, during their speeches, Moscow Education Minister Isaac Kalina and Sergey Cheremin, the Moscow municipal government minister responsible for the Department of Foreign and Economic Relations, confirmed that the website of the Electronic School of Moscow was visited by parents, students and educators. in Germany, Great Britain, Austria and the United States. This shows that the school is becoming a large global international project.

During the same visit, we also had the chance to meet the senior leaders and teachers of one of the main primary and secondary institutions in Moscow. Here we have been able to observe the impressive progress of Russia in the field of education. We were told that in many schools in Moscow there are already specific Lego lessons and lessons for children six years of age or older. Lego Education is used until the last year of secondary school and especially during Mathematics, Russian and Science classes. Lego sessions are also offered as extracurricular activities.

There is no kindergarten level assessment but some activities like coding are introduced at this early stage. At primary and secondary level, educational tablets are also used for assessment but children bring their own device and these are used in various lessons and also for extracurricular activities, especially when participating in activities related to school. 3D printing.

I observed a biology-science class for 15-year-olds in which the teacher used the same high-tech equipment that is used in hospitals. This was part of a medical class project that involved 69 schools. The teacher explained to us that there were occasions during the school year when students could witness an operation performed in the hospital live.

Engineering as a subject is introduced when students are still 10 years old.

I also noticed a nuclear microscope in a robotics lab. According to the head of the school, this educational resource alone cost around 5 million euros. It was obvious that a lot of money and planning went into the Moscow Electronic School. It reflects the progress that Moscow and Russia in general are currently making in the field of education.

Dr Kenneth Vella is Principal of Mater Boni Consilii – St Joseph School, Paola, and Chairman of the Quality Assurance Committee of the National Commission for Higher and Higher Education (NCFHE). He is the international representative for the Mediterranean region of Learning Scoop Finland and also collaborates with Seppo Finland, ELE Finland OY and the University of Applied Sciences Tampere.

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