Regional education forum to mull Azerbaijan's k-12 transition (Azer News)

Baku will host a two-day regional forum to discuss the country’s shift to the 12-year education system on May 25-26.

The Innovative Strategies for Supporting Transition to a 12-Year Education System forum is co-organized by the Asian Development Bank and Azerbaijan’s Education Ministry, ADB said on May 25.

The forum, which will gather international education planners, experts, and policy makers from Central and West Asia, will look into the country’s education sector, currently undergoing a comprehensive restructuring to produce more skilled workers for a knowledge-based market economy.

The conference will share good practices on K-12 transition as a key element of Azerbaijan’s move to a knowledge society, Betty Wilkinson, Director of Public Management, Financial Sector and Trade at ADB’s Central and West Asia Department said.

The Azerbaijani government plans to realign its education system with international standards by enhancing the quality of skilled workers and facilitating access to all levels of education.

One of the pillars of the country’s National Development Strategy 2020 is the extension of primary and secondary education to 12 school years, making student attendance obligatory until age 16.

Azerbaijan recently hosted ADB’s 48th Annual General Meeting in Baku, during which participants affirmed a vision for strengthening inclusive growth and innovation in the Asia-Pacific region. Human capital development is an important contribution to this growth. The forum will support regional dialogue on strengthening human capital by improving educational systems in the region.

ADB, based in Manila, is dedicated to reducing poverty in Asia and the Pacific through inclusive economic growth, environmentally sustainable growth and regional integration. Established in 1966, it is owned by 67 members – 48 from the region. In 2014, ADB assistance totaled $22.9 billion, including co-financing of $9.2 billion.

Azerbaijan joined the ADB in 1999, and the country’s share in the bank’s capital is 0.5 percent.

Since the start of its cooperation, the ADB has allocated Azerbaijan $1.6 billion for 12 projects in the area of road construction, energy, irrigation, water supply and sanitation improvement.