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GESCI launched in Kenya

The Global eSchools Community Initiative (GESCI) founded by the UN ICT Task Force was today launched in Kenya at the ongoing IGF conference. The independent international non-governmental organisation (NGO) will contribute to the development of a knowledge society through the provision of strategic advice and technical support on the integration of ICT in Education, Science, Technology and Innovation systems in Kenya. GESCI plans to assist the Ministry of Eduction in their plan to have a holistic integration of ICT in teaching, learning, research and innovation.

GESCI will work with Ministries of Education and Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) to develop capacities that address the use of ICT and ICT innovations and key education challenges of access, quality and management.

Present during the launch, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Education Dr. Bitange Ndemo noted that GESCI will apply technology power into education and that the Kenyan government welcomes this opportunity to develop a knowledge economy in the country.

This will be possible through its strategies of supporting the development and strengthening of ICT related skills at all levels of education and training system. This includes training teachers and tutors capacities and competences in ICT skills development.

GESCI is currently working with governments in Kenya, Rwanda, Ghana, Tanzania, Mauritius, Zambia, South Africa, Uganda, Angola, and Botswana. The NGO is a partner of the African Union Commission (AUC), the Association for the Development of Education in Africa (ADEA), and the United Nations Economic Commission for Arica (UNECA).

Founded by the government of Finland, Sweden, Ireland and Switzerland, GESCI expects to create a multi-stakeholder knowledge exchange platform that will bring together private, public and civil society to create knowledge partnerships.

Meanwhile, GESCI has appointed Jerome Morrissey as their new CEO. Mr Morrissey, first director of the National Centre for Technology in Education in Ireland (www.ncte.ie), will oversee the fulfillment of GESCI's mission. Mr Morrissey will be based at GESCIs headquarters in Nairobi, Kenya. Mr Morrissey has been responsible for the implementation of the Irish government's ICT Initiative in Irish schools and for advising the Government on ICT policy in education. Mr Morrissey takes over from Jyrki Pulkkinen who has returned to the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland as Senior Adviser on Information Society Science, Technology and Innovation following a three year term with GESCI.

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