In her role as UNICEF’s Eminent Advocate for Children, Her Majesty Queen Rania highlighted the importance of providing a quality education for all childrenBUENOS AIRES, 22 October 2008 – During a working visit to Argentina, Her Majesty Queen Rania visited the Paula Albarracín de Sarmiento school, where UNICEF and the Ministry of Education of the province of Buenos Aires are supporting an innovative project featuring an auto-evaluation tool designed to measure the quality of education.
In her role as UNICEF´s Eminent Advocate for Children, Her Majesty Queen Rania learned about this new initiative which allows teachers, administrators and families to evaluate educational practices and propose a plan of action to improve the quality of education at the school. The project is part of an initiative supported by UNICEF Argentina which aims to provide schools with evaluation tools within the framework of the National Education Law.
Her Majesty Queen Rania met with the governor of the province of Buenos Aires, Daniel Scioli, the Director General of Culture and Education of the Province, Mario Oporto and UNICEF´s Education Specialist Elena Duro.
“The auto-evaluation tool allows schools to prepare its own action plans, to gain ownership, to generate enthusiasm and a commitment to improving education standards,” said Elena Duro. “The results provided by the tool, which is currently being used in 410 schools in five provinces, are used to design public policies.”
Queen Rania spent time with children at the school, taking part in an interactive social science class with six graders which centered on the importance of a child´s right to an education. The children were interested in finding out more about education in Jordan and children’s right to express themselves in that country.
Towards the end of her visit, Her Majesty emphasized the importance of empowering schools and highlighted the potential of auto-evaluation tools in that regard.
“Improving the quality of education is a challenge for us all – governments, teachers, families and children,” she said. “The auto-evaluation tool generates the kind of thinking that we need, two brains are better than one.”
Her Majesty also highlighted the fact that Argentina is about to reach universal coverage for primary education and that the country sees education not as a challenge but as part of the solution. “In a global economy in which human resources are the most important capital we have, the best way to ensure a country’s progress is to enable its citizens to develop to their full potential through education,” she said.
Following her visit to the school, Her Majesty Queen Rania visited the Boca Juniors football club, a UNICEF partner. During her visit, Her Majesty took part in a workshop entitled “Space for Peace” and conversed with Argentinean teenagers about peaceful coexistence and education. Boca Junior´s star player Martín Palermo, UNICEF officials, the teenagers at the workshop and Her Majesty underscored the importance of education for peace-building.
Her Majesty Queen Rania ended her visit at the famous neighborhood of Caminito, in la Boca, where she was joined by Hernán Lombardi, Minister of Culture of the City of Buenos Aires.
UNICEF is on the ground in over 150 countries and territories to help children survive and thrive, from early childhood through adolescence. The world’s largest provider of vaccines for developing countries, UNICEF supports child health and nutrition, good water and sanitation, quality basic education for all boys and girls, and the protection of children from violence, exploitation, and AIDS. UNICEF is funded entirely by the voluntary contributions of individuals, businesses, foundations and governments.
Photos of Her Majesty Queen Rania during her visit to Argentina can be downloaded from http://www.unicef.org/
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