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Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport, Open Institute and Smart Axiata have announced the roll out of the “Smart 1,000 Grade 12 Video Collection”, with support from Smart Axiata’s 1 Million USD COVID-19 Relief Fund.

Following Smart Axiata’s announcement in late May that it will be supporting both institutions, Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport and Open Institute have built two fully equipped studios to produce online video content for Grade 12 students that will enable them to continue their distance learning and prepare for this year’s Bac II exam in the midst of nationwide school closures due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Smart 1,000 Grade 12 Video Collection will be a great resource for this and future year’s 12th graders, the digital library of online video content will also increase the ministry’s resiliency in the future. The Relief Fund has added great value to the long-standing collaboration and partnership between Smart Axiata, Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport and Open Institute.

“As the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport is further expanding virtual learning opportunities, Smart Axiata’s Relief Fund is a great assistance to our efforts in supporting Cambodia’s educational system through digital technology. The new initiative focuses on Grade 12, since students attending the last year of high school need to prepare for their final exams and later proceed with their university applications,” said H.E. Dr. Hang Chuon Naron, the Minister of Education, Youth and Sport.

More than 400 videos have been produced so far. While more videos are being created for the collection, the ministry will begin launching the videos simultaneously in a more structured manner. The materials will be premiered on the ministry’s social media channels, including on its Facebook page and YouTube channels, as well as broadcasted on Educational Television Khmer (TVK 2).

Smart Axiata’s Chief Executive Officer Thomas Hundt said: “We want to ensure that the school closures won’t get in the way of Cambodian students’ education. Smart has always been committed to support the education sector in Cambodia. We believe in the power of partnerships and collaborations; thus, Smart Axiata’s 1 Million USD COVID-19 Relief Fund has been launched to support the effort of the Cambodian government and to help communities impacted by the global public health crisis.”

The Relief Fund targets initiatives based on four focus areas: ICT for education, crisis management, social distancing and personal hygiene. Partnerships between private and public entities are encouraged to submit proposals to the Relief Fund for up to 200,000 USD contribution each.

In March, all schools were forced to close due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Seeing the urgent need to support Grade 12 students in preparing for their exams with distance-learning materials, Open Institute applied to the Relief Fund to run the initiative together with the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport and Smart Axiata.

Speaking of the benefits of the initiative, Mr. Javier Sola, Executive Director of the Open Institute, said: “The financial support received from the Fund enabled us to quickly put together two modern recording studios that are soundproofed and equipped with smartboards, audio equipment and high-definition cameras. With the two studios now operating at maximum efficiency, we are able to produce the amazing amount of 80 videos per week. A dedicated quality-assurance team works closely to guarantee that all recorded videos are up to the ministry’s standards and are acceptable for broadcast. We are very excited to work with exceptional teachers and a hardworking team to produce this video collection that will be a great resource for students, even after the pandemic.”

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