Cambodia Launches Khmer Digital Literacy Programme

A six-month program will be rolled out at selected schools in April to equip students and teachers with key digital literacy skills
Launch of the Khmer Digital Literacy Programme. Kiripost/Siv Channa
Launch of the Khmer Digital Literacy Programme. Kiripost/Siv Channa

The Khmer Digital Literacy Programme was launched on Wednesday to equip Cambodian students and educators with digital literacy skills, bridging the digital gap and empowering citizens to navigate the online landscape safely and effectively.

The Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport (MoEYS) and Kampuchea Action to Promote Education (KAPE) are teaming up with Meta to launch a new digital literacy program aimed at improving the digital skills of students and educators in Cambodia.

The program will begin in April for six months and will provide a digital literacy resource pack to selected schools, targeting between 3,000 to 5,000 students.

MoEYS, Meta and KAPE will work together to ensure that the program is successful within the given timeframe. Initially, six New Generation Schools will be chosen and 12 Master Trainers from each school will receive training in the Khmer Digital Literacy program.

Launch of the Khmer Digital Literacy Programme. Kiripost/Siv Channa
Launch of the Khmer Digital Literacy Programme. Kiripost/Siv Channa

Kim Sethany, Secretary of State at MoEYS, said she is looking forward to seeing the results of the Khmer Digital Literacy Programme and how it will positively impact students and educators.

“This course will equip schools with the necessary skills to thrive in the digital age, and we look forward to seeing their growth and success,” Sethany said at the launch ceremony on Wednesday.

She added that NGOs and private schools have a significant role to play in promoting education, with a focus on encouraging e-learning as a response to the current workforce trends. In order to equip students with the necessary skills for the digital age, there is an emphasis on developing digital literacy which encompasses the ability to read, write, evaluate, and possess 21st-century skills, Sethany said.

The initiative aims to implement a new digital literacy program and provide sufficient ICT resources in NGOs. This will enable the spread of the curriculum to other schools.

“If we don't start now, we won't be able to respond effectively to the rapidly trending ICT and education,” she said.

The 'Train the Trainers' (ToT) workshop will combine the existing ICT curriculum in NGSs with the We Think Digital curriculum from Meta. This will equip Master Trainers to teach digital literacy courses to students in target schools.

The program is designed for people who are new to the internet and those who want to improve their existing digital skills. The pilot program will be implemented in six New Generation Schools (NGS).

Heng Pheakdey, Public Policy Manager at Meta, believes that digital literacy is essential for everyone to participate in the digital world fully and is proud to support the Khmer Digital Literacy Programme and its efforts to equip Cambodian citizens with the skills needed to navigate the online landscape safely and effectively.

“We are excited to see this program’s positive impact on the community and look forward to continuing our partnership with the program,” Pheakdey said.

Hin Simhuon, deputy director of KAPE, said the program will help students and educators enhance their digital skills.

Simhuon said that the goal of the Digital Literacy Programme is to equip people with the knowledge and abilities they need to prosper in today’s digital age.

“By offering everyone access to digital materials through this program, we seek to bridge the digital gap.”

According to Sam Kamsann, vice principal of NGS Sisowath High School, the Khmer Digital Literacy Programme provides schools with a new opportunity to accept digital literacy programs that can help students become e-citizens and valuable resources for the nation. The implementation of digital learning is crucial in achieving the target of becoming a digital government.

He added that NGS schools have already taken steps to promote digital literacy by focusing on developing students' cognitive competencies, with an emphasis on STEM, ICT, critical thinking skills, as well as inter- and intrapersonal competencies.

“Students who receive digital education have the potential to compete internationally and can yield positive results and rewards. The world is no longer limited to traditional modes of learning, and teachers are not the only source of knowledge for students,” Kamsann told Kiripost.