First BARMM Educ Summit aims to promote peace through education

Ministry of Basic, Higher, and Technical Education (MBHTE) Chief Mohager Iqbal (front, left) cutting the ribbon with MBHTE Deputy Minister Haron Meling (front, right) UNICEF Mindanao Field Office Chief Radoslaw Rzehak (front, 2nd from right) at the first ever BARMM Education Summit at the SMX Convention Center, SM Lanang.

DAVAO CITY – Ministers of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM), local educational institutions, and educators were all present at the first ever BARMM Education Summit, which was recently held at the SMX Convention Center in SM Lanang. This gathering of key stakeholders was organized to discuss ways to use education as a means of promoting peace and regional development.

Ministry of Basic, Higher, and Technical Education (MBHTE) Chief Mohager Iqbal and the rest of the ministry led the proceedings at the event. All the attendees contributed to a focused, intensive, and inclusive consultations on continuing education and grassroots development for the education sector in the region.

Iqbal, in his State of the Education Address emphasized that “education is a pillar of nation-building.”

“It can help society sustainably and logically sustain and overcome significant impediments – poverty, injustice, corruption, and conflict,” the Education Minister said.

Iqbal also read a message from Vice President and Education Secretary Sara Duterte. Duterte’s letter highlighted the role of education in post-conflict reconstruction and in sustaining the gains of peace. “We counteract violent extremism by nurturing among our children and youth the values of inclusion, tolerance, conflict resolution, and non-violence,” she underscored. “Let us work together to reshape the future of BARMM by strengthening our education system, filling the learning gaps caused by the pandemic and instituting a culture of peace curriculum to ensure a successful post-conflict reconstruction,” the Vice President and Department of Education Secretary  concluded.

BARMM Chief Minister Ahod Embrahim also delivered a video message, wherein he hoped that the first education summit will be a fundamental avenue for nation-building. “The Education Summit is an opportunity to replicate the message of how significant education and literacy are in nation-building. It is also a venue to strengthen and empower local school boards, school governing councils, and parent-teacher associations,” he emphasized.

The Chief Minister shared that he envisioned “an inclusive education for all learners and educators”. “We do not choose whom to teach and who will teach. We aspire for a Bangsamoro Region where no learner is left behind and no educator feels unappreciated, underserved, or unheard,” he concluded.

The BARMM Education Summit is the culmination of  earlier local education summits conducted in the provinces of Maguindanao del Sur and del Norte, Lanao del Sur, Basilan, Sulu, Tawi-Tawi, and the Special Geographic Area