Distinguished National and International Guests, Ladies, Gentlemen,
Professors and My Dear Students,
Today I am very honored and pleased to join you all in this closing ceremony to had-over degrees to pedagogy graduates of the 10th batch and the graduates of basic French-Khmer language skills of the 7th batch of 2005 in the Institution of National Education.
At this great memorable and joyful event, let me express my congratulation and cordial appreciation for all achievements of the presented students that are receiving degrees of pedagogy and basic skill of French-Khmer languages for their efforts in overcoming challenges during their study, thus achieving fruitful outcomes today.
After listening the opening address of His Excellency Kol Pheng, Sr. Minister, Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports and the 1993-2005 report regarding the development of human resource presented by the director of the Institution of National Education, the center has produced 5768 teachers of tertiary level of which 1254 are female teachers, including 358 of pedagogy teachers, graduates of the 10th batch and 308 teachers of basic French-Khmer language skills, graduates of the 7thbatch that will receive their degrees in just a moment.
I would like to take this opportunity to highly value the achievements attained by the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports, and the Institute of National Education during the past years for their strive for education and for their attention and care in helping to provide quality training and knowledge transferring to the new generation of youth, which is a vital force for society to implement education sector reform to reflect and respond to the Rectangular Strategy of the Royal Government of Cambodia aiming at creating a rapidly developed Cambodian society that have knowledgeable population with practical skills, high technology, vibrant culture, dignity, appropriate level of living standards with harmony and prosperity.
Also taking this opportunity on behalf of the Royal Government and People of Cambodia, let me express my sincere and utmost gratitude to friendly countries, in particular to Japan through JICA, the United Kingdom through CAMSET, the French government, the European Union and many international organizations such as UNESCO and UNICEF that have greatly contributed and supported, both financially and in terms of variety technical assistance that is vital for a successful development of education sector in Cambodia.
We all indeed remember the prolong civil war and internal conflict for past decades that have almost destroyed to the ground the foundation of social infrastructure, culture, tradition, religion and believes of the society. Despite this, in general up to the present we have made much progress in the education sector. In fact, right after the liberation day on January 7, 1979, we have started to gradually rehabilitate the nation within our means in the circumstances of struggles, paramount challenges and difficulties. During those periods, at the same time on one hand we had to rehabilitate and develop the country from ruins and destruction of social and economic infrastructures. On the other hand we had to defense and prevent at all cost the return of genocide regime. Furthermore, this mission we have to carry out in the condition of economic blockade and restraint on foreign development aid. Thus, recognizing the utmost value of education sector, we have made great efforts in developing human capital by recalling remaining professors and teachers that have survived the genocide to provide schooling and further training/teaching to others to reopen schools in provinces/cities across the country.
At the present, Cambodia has entered a new era in education sector development focusing on strengthening the education foundation and quality of schooling within the economic development framework which is systematic and comprehensive. In the long tem vision, we link the education strategy with poverty reduction through combining the education sector financing plan with the public expenditure management.
It is clear that the main goal of the strategy is to promote capacity of human resources with high technical and science skill which effectively response to demand of labor market; have entrepreneurship and innovation, responsibility, discipline, morality and virtue, conscious and honest working behavior for the development of our nation. Underline such perspective, the Royal Government continues thriving the goal of “Education for all” through assuring equity of nine year basic education for all children and creating favorable environment for enrollment of children in poor families, particularly through strengthening and expanding public institution, as well as increasing scholarship to children in poor family. The Royal Government will continue strengthening partnership with private sector, national and international community in order to enhance and elevate quality of education services at secondary, vocational and technical training level, as well as tertiary level in accordance to international standard and demand of human resources in development process.
All of us have definitely recognized that education and training are important for the society, and this role is not only to produce human resources for production as the result of increases in capability of people, and to increase revenue of the state or private company; but also to improve living standard, reputation, dignity of the individual, family and the whole society through knowledge, know-how, efforts and legal occupation, good morality, and respectful behavior that bring prosperity to the whole society as a humanity community of a nation.
The Royal Government set its vision for human development including vocational and technical training steaming from the above perspective. Indeed, human resources development is a responsibility of a nation, but it is necessary to be cooperated and supported by national and international communities. In this sense, the Royal Government has paid special attention to equip Cambodian with professional skills and technical knowledge. Today, our policies follow market competition principle for the sake of improving professional skill among our youth. We have established network of educational and training institutions as well as encouraging the mutual recognition of training among ASEAN’s countries in order to facilitate the mobility of labor in the region that open to new job opportunity for our people.
As I frequently point out, human resources development is a dead and live issue not only for national development, but also for regional and international cooperation and integration. In this regard, human resources development plays a key role within the framework of Initiative for ASEAN Integration which adopted by the leaders of ASEAN nations aiming at reducing development gap among new and old members of ASEAN. The program consists of four main parts: infrastructure, IT and telecommunication, regional economic integration and human resources development.
Human resources development shares common political and social characteristics. The human development, including to vocational and technical training, contributes to sharpen intelligence and dignity of our citizens. Human factor would increase income and push forward urbanization that forging a strong middle class of society. The tendency forms the basis for a pro-active and efficient democracy. The growing of intellectuality, rationalization and capability would ensure high quality of expression for social development and would allow people who have high capability and qualification to participate in governance and directing the national development.
Today, I have a great pleasure and welcome to all graduates who I will confer the degree in a minute. All of you have chosen an important and dignified profession that is teacher. All development works rely on quality intelligence of youth who are the main column and successor of our nation. It is clear that strength or weaknesses of the nation, high or low quality of human resources are the result of teaching. Therefore, no TEACHER means no education and no EDUCATION means noDEVELOPMENT. With the understanding about importance of the profession, both the Royal Government and I always pay attention to building schools and lifting up living standards of teachers and staffs.
Today, all of you have great honor in your life path to graduate from your profession training to become a teacher, a profession which plays great and honor role and gains respects from the society. From now on, all of you become educational staffs who are responsible for transferring knowledge in various education institutions to students and transforming them into qualified human resources. In this regard, all of you are the front-line forces and the hope of the Royal Government and whole society. Therefore, all of you should well fulfill yours own duties according to pedagogy principle, building characteristics to be a teacher and creating an identity to be a successful teacher in order to gain respect from students and the public. Please remember that your reputation and dignity mainly come from your doings, actions, and characteristics of yourself. Finally, I wish all of you with five gems of Buddhist blessing and for all of graduates with happiness and success in the assigned duties.