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Officially opened on 17 October in the presence of the Sovereign Prince, Edu Lab illustrates the Prince’s Government’s ambition in the field of e-education.
The opening of Edu Lab is a major step for the Extended Monaco programme. The establishment of this centre of digital excellence turns the priority accorded by the Prince’s Government to e-education into a reality.
The teacher training space is located just below the Department of Education, Youth and Sport and is equipped with some innovative tools, including virtual reality headsets, which have been made available to help develop and implement digital education projects. The centre’s aim is to improve teachers’ skills both in the use of digital solutions and in the production of content, and to foster a sense of group competition. “Edu Lab Monaco is an initiative that meets the objective of enhancing the value of public service by promoting links between teachers, creating a team environment while valuing each individual’s creativity,” explains Nicolas Rodier, Technical Advisor at the Department of Education.
The 200-m2 centre will include a test classroom and a project codesign space. Its role will be to:
In other words, through this training, teachers will have an opportunity to experiment with digital devices, tools and software, and to learn how they work. They will then be able to create educational content, and be in the best position to pass it on to their pupils.
To ensure that education in Monaco remains an attractive prospect, it is vital that it is designed to meet the needs of the twenty-first century. This will enable pupils from the Principality to access the best higher education institutions, which are undergoing their own digital transformations and reviewing their selection criteria accordingly. It is for this reason that, beginning in autumn 2019, pupils enrolled in Monaco’s schools, from nursery through to lower secondary, have been receiving one hour per week of coding lessons. “Reading, writing, arithmetic and coding are the four basic skills that Monaco wants all of its pupils to learn now,” says Nicolas Rodier. “Learning to code is a key challenge for our young people. Digital technology is a reality which is fundamentally changing our economy and society. School must prepare our pupils for the world which is coming.”
The only way that this overhaul of teaching practices will be possible is if we allow teachers to become full participants in the initiative, to have access to high-level experts and innovative teaching practices. The Edu Lab centre now makes this possible.
During the first Digital Education Conference, held on 5 April 2019 and attended by more than 200 teachers from the Principality, teachers shared their wish for access to a space equipped with the latest technology where they could design and build innovative educational projects; a space that would encourage the sharing of practices and be inspiring. Edu Lab Monaco is the response to this need.
The first Digital Education Conference also produced a number of innovative educational and teaching projects. The Prince’s Government selected six projects to receive financial support:
centre with a test classroom and a project codesign space
identified innovative educational and teaching projects