Holding education ministry responsible

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Al-Madinah newspaper

THE Ministry of Education has confirmed that text books for both elementary and middle schools were ready, and so were for the high school. All schools received their books except for high school, which was scheduled to arrive by the end of the first week, according to the special committee overlooking the start of the new school year.

According to Mubarak Al-Osaimi, official spokesman of the Ministry of Education, the committee responsible for improving school curricula was late in handing over the final draft of books to the printing press. He stressed that this will not hinder the education process. Schools initially will utilize the days to prepare the final plan for student, including helping students to choose the courses and finalizing their schedules.

According due respect to the ministry›s efforts, I think it is depressing and strange. I start with the talk about printing text books in Saudi Arabia especially that is witnessing a perfect digital transformation, according to the numbers and statistics. The number of Internet users in the Kingdom exceeded more than 30 million people. The number of active social media accounts in the Kingdom reached 25 million accounts and the percentage of people carrying smart phones in Saudi Arabia increased to 96 percent. Twenty-two percent of people are carrying tablets in addition to 56 percent of people owning their own laptops and computers. The time that Saudis spend browsing through Internet is 6.45 hours daily.

Yes it is strange that the Ministry of Education is spending billions annually in printing books. If there was a minor mistake in the printing of the books then the whole quantity will be pulled out from the schools and destroyed and later reprinted adding additional cost, just like it happened many times before. We are living in country with a future vision of rationing spending and searching for industrial intelligence.

I think it is about time to hold the education officials responsible for this wastage of money annually and spending most of the budget on improvement of school books instead of digitizing it.

I find the excuse by the ministry that high school books were not ready because the final draft was not sent to the printing press and that will not affect the education process is unacceptable, especially that the annual vacation was long. I think that this is the policy by the Ministry of Education is to create excuses when they are faced with problems.

The number of active social media accounts in the Kingdom reached 25 million accounts and the percentage of people carrying smart phones in Saudi Arabia increased to 96 percent. Twenty-two percent of people are carrying tablets in addition to 56 percent of people owning their own laptops and computers.


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