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Microsoft in collaboration with the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Elementary (KPK) and Secondary Education Department hosted a seminar in Education dubbed ‘Microsoft Edu Day’. The seminar brought together delegates from across the region to showcase the latest technology designed specifically for the education sector to promote immersive, inclusive and 21st century learning. 

The event was graced by Advisor to Chief Minister on Elementary and Secondary Education, Mr. Zia Ullah Khan Bangash; Provincial Minister for Information Technology, Mr. Kamran Khan Bangash and Microsoft Country Education Lead, Mr. Jibran Jamshad in addition to relevant stakeholders of the Education sector. The event provided a platform to explore possible partnership opportunities of empowering the growing number of youths in the country which is at an all-time high according to the 2017 Pakistan National Human Development Report.  The report highlights how the country’s youth can be a critical force for development, if they are empowered with education and knowledge.

“In today’s era of mobility, there is no other way but to re-invent. Developing relevant skills from a young age has become a necessity, as youth navigate an increasingly technological world” says Advisor to the Chief Minister on Elementary and Secondary Education; Zia Ullah Khan Bangash.” It is essential that learners are up skilled, with access to quality education that provides youth not only with the technical and vocational but also core employability skills, necessary for them to become a functional part of a thriving digital economy.”

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Some of the technologies showcased include Office 365, Azure , Microsoft Imagine Academy Certifications and the Microsoft Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) and Campus Management Solutions, which are designed to drive better learning outcomes, more productive classroom time, and create effective institutions. Artificial intelligence is powering majority of the solutions being used in education space, be it the use of cognitive APIs for safe campus management, or to run training algorithms in a managed instance under Machine Learning Studio, or to predict learning outcomes based on student performance all year around; insight driven decision making is only possible using the power of AI, built into the Microsoft platform.

“As the education sector becomes more competitive, digital transformation is now becoming a necessary means of survival as this new digital world requires educators to adapt and adopt digital technologies, methodologies and mindsets.” says Provincial Minister of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa for Information Technology; Kamran Khan Bangash.” it’s important to understand the benefits of digital transformation in education and communicate this to key stakeholders within the business. Understanding and communicating value is the key to success, so prioritizing this is essential.”

“Learning experiences have changed massively over the years with the rise of self-learning platforms as well as gamification concepts which have redefined the way we learn and teach today,” says Jibran Jamshad, Microsoft Country Education Lead for Pakistan. “With Office 365, Azure and our productivity suite, institutions can keep up with the rapid pace of innovation and design classrooms that foster innovation and inspire students to achieve more.” In addition to the technology showcase, Microsoft also announced the E2 Educators Exchange competition for local Microsoft Innovative Educator Experts (MIEs). The competition will give local education leaders the opportunity to attend E2 in Sydney, Australia, in 2020, and meet with global educators to explore industry trends and emerging technologies. Interested teachers can enter the competition via https://www.microsoft.com/MEA/educationexchangecompetition/

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