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Royal Hashemite Court (Jordan)

King meets with JTA members, reasserts support
Amman, 21 May 2012

© Royal Hashemite Court Archives

His Majesty King Abdullah on Monday voiced support for the Jordan Teachers Association (JTA) and urged teachers’ leaders to engage in efforts to improve the education situation in the country and be proactive partners in the ongoing reform process.

During a meeting with JTA President Mustafa Rawashdeh and members of the Association’s board, King Abdullah highlighted the need to improve the living conditions of teachers and provide them with all means to adequately carry out their mission along with other institutions to enhance the Kingdom’s development and modernisation.

In a letter addressed to the JTA, the King said the syndicate should play its role as an “effective and influential national institution that takes the side of the country and its people.”

“The syndicate’s job is to come up with visions and draw up plans and programmes to take the profession to the next level, promote the teachers’ message and preserve the ethics and traditions of teaching,” he said.

Commending the JTA council’s elections as an example “of democratic practices at their best,” His Majesty said the establishment of the Association was a key step on the path of reform that strengthened the democratic process.

Teachers can do more by engaging in the nationwide debate over reform and the way ahead. “We are confident that our noble teachers are most capable of taking the initiative and suggesting ideas to help entrench the principles of dialogue based on presenting viewpoints and accepting others’ views. Agreement and understanding reached through sound debate is our way to move forward towards the vast horizons of creativity, excellence and quality work.”

Dialogue, he said, “is the way to build generations that do not take the status quo for granted and are not content with the available and the possible, but rather look ahead to a better reality and march towards the future with the determination and resolve to become brilliant innovators and to give limitlessly.”

In the letter, King Abdullah listed achievements in the field of education, citing the digitisation of curricula, the adoption of critical and creative thinking and scientific research, and the increase in the number of schools with model infrastructure.

More accomplishments are expected, he said.

“Efforts are ongoing to open more kindergartens, connect schools electronically, and improve the educational environment through continuous infrastructure upgrading and expansion, upgrade labs, update and digitise curricula, support and improve the school nutrition programme through partnerships between the public and private sectors and civil society institutions, along with effective elements in local communities. Furthermore, tangible progress has been made in the introduction of computer skills and English in the early stages of basic education, to bridge the digital divide and ensure equal educational opportunities.”

At the meeting with the JTA, His Majesty  underlined his “full” commitment to providing the education sector with all support. “You are leading the future, you have my support and the government’s support,” the King said addressing Rawashdeh and members of the JTA council.

Prime Minister Fayez Tarawneh said supporting the Association is a top priority for the government, the Jordan News Agency, Petra, reported. “The government is ready to cooperate with the association to render its duties a success, develop the profession of education and achieve a quantum leap in the field,” the premier said.

Minister of Education Fayez Saudi said the Association plays an important role in the educational process, describing it as an important partner of the ministry in its efforts to upgrade the education status in the Kingdom.

In remarks during a lunch banquet held by the King in honour of the JTA president and members of the board and central commissions from all governorates, Rawashdeh expressed appreciation for the King’s continuous support and the attention he pays to educational affairs and developing the performance of teachers.

Rawashdeh outlined a number of issues and demands that should be met including reforming the educational process, transforming the headquarters of teachers’ clubs into headquarters for the Association to enable it to carry out its duties, allocating plots of lands to build housing units for teachers and raising the quota of public university seats for teachers’ children.

Rawashdeh stressed that the Association is looking forward to working with the Ministry of Education to develop the educational process.