Smart Axiata, Google and GSMA to partner on Digital Literacy Program
Pilot to be carried out in 3 provinces with the support from MoEYS and MPTC
Phnom Penh, 20th November 2019: Approximately 1,400 high school students across three provinces in Cambodia will soon benefit from a new digital literacy and internet safety program being piloted by Smart Axiata, Cambodia’s leading mobile telecommunications operator, Google, as well as the GSMA, the global trade association for mobile network operators.
The partnership was announced after being formally endorsed by the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport (MoEYS), which will support the project’s implementation, and the Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications (MPTC) at a meeting yesterday. The program is strongly supported by Smart’s contribution towards the Royal Government’s Capacity Building and R&D Fund.
The Digital Literacy Program will initially be made available for Grade 10 and 11 school students in Phnom Penh, Kampong Cham and Kampong Chhnang provinces. Based on the learnings from the pilot, all parties are expected to further discuss on scaling the workshops to more schools nationwide.
“Digital literacy is a key skill needed to encourage mobile adoption in Cambodia. We are proud to be working with such esteemed partners on this project to demonstrate the value of the Internet, encourage responsible use and promote the importance of digital citizenship. Our long-term goal is to roll this out nationwide to help ensure young Cambodians are accessing the Internet safely and effectively,” said Smart Axiata CFO Feiruz Ikhwan.
In the first phase, MoEYS has identified three schools in each province and nominated three teachers per school to participate in the training, led by the alumnus from SmartEdu, who will organize and implement the training. The training program by Google, includes some basic digital literacy coaching plus important reminders about password security, online threats and digital citizenship.
Besides the Digital Citizenship Curriculum by Google, the workshop facilitators will embed aspects about the Internet from GSMA’s Mobile Internet Skills Training Toolkit.
“At Google, we are technology optimists who believe both education and technology can improve the lives of students and educators, and it is important that we help the youth develop empathy, safety and responsibility as well as look out for one another online. We are delighted to be able to work with Smart Axiata and the government to design workshops that will hopefully be central for future programs that promote responsible use of digital media,” said Su Ann Lim, Google Head of Industry for Technology and Telco.
The digital literacy program will also train participants to produce entertaining and engaging videos for Internet platforms like YouTube – showing students how to script, shoot and edit videos using smartphones – on the topic of online safety learned from the workshops.
Videos produced by the students will then stand a chance to win a USD 1,000 cash prize (for each province) for the best individual video decided by online ‘likes’, while the school at each province with the highest number of video submissions will receive a USD 2,500 in-kind prize of educational material.