"Teachers of the Arctic" international project launched successfully

On 3-6 August 2010, within the framework of the Year of the Teacher, Yakutsk (Republic of Sakha (Yakutia), Russian Federation) hosted an inter-regional research and practice conference "Educational space of the Arctic: development through dialog and cooperation". During the conference the project "Teachers of the Arctic" was officially launched.

For three days representatives of the educational community of the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia) and other regions of the Russian Federation, international experts from Canada, Norway, the USA as well as UNESCO experts discussed current issues and future-oriented goals of innovative development of basic education in the Arctic regions of the Russian Federation, shared experience in the field of the development of informational and educational space in the Arctic and reinforcement of cooperation in the sphere of school education for circumpolar populations.

The main focus of the conference was the launch of the "Teachers of the Arctic" international project, jointly elaborated by the Ministry of Education of the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia) and UNESCO Institute for Information Technologies in Education. For successful implementation of the project the Government of the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia) and the UNESCO Institute for Information Technologies in Education signed the Memorandum of Understanding. The project's primary goal is to modernize the education system by training a new type of teacher – a teacher prepared to meet challenges of minority cultures and languages and to inculcate an awareness of environmental issues in young people. One of the key components of the project is to facilitate the use of ICTs, taking into account their considerable potential to alleviate some of the problems of Arctic isolation.

Among the key topics of the conference discussions  were capacity building of the teachers living in the Arctic Regions, strengthening of inter-regional and international cooperation and partnerships among government and non-government organizations in the field of education in the Arctic. The conference adopted the resolution that would serve as a basis for the project implementation. At the close of the conference Mrs Feodosiya Gabysheva, Deputy Chairman of the Government of the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia), noted: "The ’Teachers of the Arctic’ project has got a successful start".