On September 30, 2022, a meeting dedicated to the discussion of “strategic directions of secondary education” was held by the Education Development Fund under the Ministry of Science and Education of the Republic of Azerbaijan. The event was attended by Nijat Mammadli, Advisor to the Minister of Science and Education, Sabina Anvarli, an employee of the Department of Science, Higher and Secondary Education, and heads of 35 secondary education institutions.
Elnur Nasibov, Chairman of the Board of the Education Development Fund, welcomed the guests, brought the issues of the agenda to the attention of the participants, and declared the event open.
Nijat Mammadli, Advisor to the Minister of Science and Education thanked the Education Development Fund for organizing the meeting: “There is a serious need for discussions about the place of secondary education in the education system. Our goal is to determine in a short time whether the main direction of secondary education institutions is personnel training for the labor market or to ensure their transition to fundamental, higher education. The fact and the many issues we face show that sub-bachelor students who want to pursue a higher education face problems. These problems are because college graduates mostly enter the labor market as a next step, and then turn to distance education to obtain higher education. Another issue is the activities carried out in the direction of the operation of many secondary education institutions under the supervision of higher education institutions. Some secondary education institutions have been subordinated to universities. However, this subordination is relative, higher education institutions can rarely interfere with secondary education institutions. The main goal of transitioning secondary education institutions to higher education institutions is to facilitate the transition to university education. Unfortunately, many enrollees chose secondary education because they could not get enough points for higher education. We would certainly like enrollees to choose secondary education consciously, as they acquire any knowledge and skills for the labor market”.
Later, Elnur Nasibov, Chairman of the Board of the Education Development Fund presented a detailed presentation on the establishment, main purpose, and activities of the Fund: “The activities of the fund are the directions established in the charter: strengthening the integration of education and economy, implementation of public and socially important projects, adaptation of the material and technical base of educational institutions to modern requirements, and preparation of mechanisms that confirm the development of education”. Elnur Nasibov also stated that the Education Development Fund covers not only higher and secondary education but all levels of education except vocational education.
It was noted that as a result of discussions with the members of the advisory council of the Education Development Fund, 5 strategic directions of higher education were determined: implementation of academic mobility programs, institutional development of higher education institutions, support to universities in the preparation of scientific journals, publications and textbooks, participation in the development of the university-industry cooperation and support the development of students of higher education institutions. The participants were given detailed information and examples of all 5 strategic activities. “We have determined these strategic directions together with the heads of higher education institutions. After discussions with you, it will be clearer to us on which activities we can cooperate with secondary education institutions”, emphasized E. Nasibov. The event continued in an interactive form with questions, proposals, and discussions of the heads of secondary education institutions.
In the end, the Chairman invited the guests to the office of the Education Development Fund to continue the discussions and mentioned that he is always open to cooperation.