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Cambodian Education Ministry brings open source into education

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The Cambodian Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport has launched its new ICT Textbook for schools that have computers, all universities and all teacher training facilities. The new textbook also teaches the use of Khmer language Free and Open Source applications, like OpenOffice, Mekhala (Firefox) and Moyura (Thunderbird), which have been fully translated to Khmer language (Cambodian).

The new textbook follows interactive training of eight month during which all new upper secondary school ICT teachers, all ICT teachers at upper secondary schools that have computers, and all ICT Master Trainers from teacher training facilities have been trained to teach this type of software, as well as to maintain their computer facilities. The Ministry will distribute the books together with a letter from the Ministry indicating that from now on this should be the materials to be taught. Thus Cambodia becomes the first country in the world to fully change its education system to only teach Free and Open Source applications. Computers in Khmer language is available only through Free and Open Source software; separates the skill of “second-language” from the skill of “computer use”, allowing students to work on them independently, and even use their computer skills to later use computers to learn English.

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