Microsoft Asia-Pacific recently announced its 2014-2015 class of education innovators featuring 23 Microsoft Showcase Schools and 173 Microsoft Innovative Educator (MIE) Experts from 10 countries across the region.
Hailing from countries including Australia, Brunei, Indonesia, Korea, Malaysia, Singapore and Vietnam, the APAC group make up close to a fifth of the 830 teachers and 150 schools being recognized as the best of education innovators from across the world.
The showcase schools were recognized during a ceremony held in line with the Education Policy Exchange, an event organized by Microsoft with partners Intel and the British Council at the Stamford American International School and attended by education government officials, senior education leaders as well as development partners.
Almost 22 percent of MIE Experts from around the world are from APAC while around 15 percent of Showcase Schools globally also come from the region.
“These APAC Microsoft Showcase Schools and Innovative Educator Experts are leading the way in transforming learning environments and delivering more personalized education to students,” said Beth Watson, Education Director, Public Sector, Microsoft Asia-Pacific. “We hope to continue celebrating innovation and the rethinking of teaching, learning and assessment, so that young people in the APAC region will be empowered to do more and achieve more.”
Microsoft Showcase Schools are selected for demonstrating strong vision for educational change through the effective deployment of Microsoft technology school-wide and applying this vision to the transformation of their local schools.
Brunei’s Chung Hwa Middle School (BSB) was one such example, selected for its excellence in transforming its school’s learning environment to deliver more personalized education to students, using mobile and cloud technology to better prepare students for success in the workplace.
As an active Office 365 for Education institution user, BSB utilizes deep features of the software to enable anytime, anywhere learning that helps their students communicate and think out-of-the-box. BSB was also the first school in Asia to integrate the use of Skype in the Classroom, using it together with other tools including Office 365, OneDrive, OneNote, Office Mix and Yammer to inspire educators to produce effective yet creative and thought-provoking lessons.
“Our school has always embraced technology at its best and Microsoft tools have inspired us to be experiential in our classroom environment, transforming our teaching and learning to the highest level of excellence,” Madam Kho Guik Lan, Principal of Chung Hwa BSB, said.
Thailand’s Bangkok Christian College (BCC) is another example, selected for its innovation in integrating Kodu – a visual programming language made specifically for creating games, as well as Project Spark – a “game maker” video game for Microsoft Windows 8.1 and Xbox One into its curriculum.
“At Bangkok Christian College, we choose only the best education technology for our students to spark off their ideas creation process and enable them to learn to their fullest potential. We integrated Kodu and Project Spark into our curriculum, using these technology tools to conduct lessons as a special technology subject for our students,” Watcharapong Apinyanurangsri, Acting Manager, Bangkok Christian College, said.