New MEP technological program would cover less than 30% of educational centers

The new training program Technology of the Ministry of Public Education (MEP) It will cover just under 30% of educational centers next year. Which means that 3,300 schools and colleges would not be able to implement it.

This project is not considered a program, but rather the establishment of a new computer science subject with summative evaluation, it would be implemented in 4700 schools and colleges that previously had programs such as the National Educational Informatics Program (PRONIE), the National Mobile Technologies Program (PNTM), as well as the Educational Innovation Program (PNIE), which were eliminated.

But, for the program to be implemented in educational centers, there must be at least one computer science teacher and personnel who maintain the equipment, which could leave nearly 3,300 schools and colleges out of the program, which represents 76% of all public education institutions.

What happens to those educational centers in which there is no computer science teacher?

Recently, the director of Technological Resources, Fressy Aguilar, assured the deputies in the Legislative Assembly that this program will take—according to MEP projections—approximately 4 years to completely cover all educational centers in the country.

“If this budget and this vision are maintained, we would be staggering by 20% annually, in such a way that by 2028 the program would already cover all educational centers,” said Aguilar.

The program was approved by the Higher Council of Education (CSE) and will be implemented with the human and material resources currently available.

That is, the number of educational centers with health orders due to poor infrastructure they should implement it and it is unknown how it will be applied in cases where there is no computer educator, due to the budget for next year, which limits opportunities for new hires.

In addition to this, the new subject will be summative, that is, a subject that Students must pass to pass the year.

According to the MEP, this measure seeks to increase student commitment, since previous programs lacked a summative evaluation, which resulted in a lower level of commitment on the part of students.

“The new subject represents a bold vision for the future of education and takes advantage of the experience, infrastructure and knowledge acquired from previous programs to offer a unified, solid, effective educational proposal under the leadership of the Ministry of Public Education,” he stated. the Minister of Education, Anna Katharina Müller.

New program

What happened to the Omar Dengo Foundation (FOD)? The minister announced in April of this year that the agreement with the Foundation was extended until May, however, after that month it would not be renewed again.

Instead, the Government took charge of education in that field and created a new program that will be implemented starting in 2024.

The National Technological Training Program will replace the National Educational Information Program (Pronie) which aimed to promote essential topics such as computing, cybersecurity and other fundamental aspects of the digital age.

The decision to dispense with the FOD, with more than three decades of work in the area, has generated concern about the MEP’s ability to maintain the quality and effectiveness of technological training.

This new program It will be based on 3 axes: “The Development of Computational Thinking for Problem Solving”, where students’ ability to approach complex problems in a logical manner will be promoted.

Another of the axes is “Citizenship and Digital Ethics”, where according to the MEP, the responsible and ethical use of technology will be promoted, equipping students with the necessary skills to safely navigate cyberspace.

And the last one would be “Entrepreneurship and Innovation”, at this point students will be inspired to be entrepreneurs and innovative thinkers.

In addition, it will cover 4 specific areas of study, including:

  • Data Science and Artificial Intelligence: Prepares students to understand and apply key concepts in data science and artificial intelligence, essential skills in the 21st century economy.
  • Programming and Algorithms: Encourages logical thinking and programming, giving students the skills necessary to develop software and solve complex problems.
  • Physical Computing and Robotics: Explore the world of robotics and physical computing, allowing students to experiment with tangible technology and device control.
  • Technological and Digital Appropriation: Facilitates equitable access to digital tools and resources, ensuring that all students have the opportunity to make the most of technology.

Officials on PNFT

Two heads of various Technology Departments of the Ministry of Public Education (MEP) denied the Director of Technological Resources, Fresia Aguilar, for ensuring that the new National Technological Training Program was built in conjunction with said departments.

Through the document DVM-AC-DRTE-JEF-016-2023 The leadership of the Department of Research, Development and Implementation, as well as that of the Department of Documentation and Electronic Information and that of the National Mobile Technologies Program, assured that they did not participate in the construction of the new plan.

According to the officials, it was not until November 10 that the document with the PNFT curriculum was officially shared with them, so that they could read it and find out about it.

Following Aguilar’s statements, the leaders pointed out what was said and asked for greater transparency in future public interventions.

“We respectfully request that, in future public interventions, when our names are mentioned, it be in accordance with the truth,” the document reads.

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