President Soomro leads ECOSF and SAMEO delegation to meet KOFAC official for Collaboration in South Korea on August 30, 2017
Followed by a visit to Sangmoon High School, a meeting was held at the head quarters of Korea Foundation for Advancement of Science and Creativity (KOFAC) on August 30, 2017 in Seoul, South Korea. The delegation led by Prof. Dr. Manzoor H. Soomro President ECOSF and comprised of Dr. R. InderJani Director of SAMEO from Indonesia and Mr. Aphiya Hathem Deputy President of Science Museum of Thailand in Bangkok and Mr. Khalil Raza of ECOSF visited the KOFAC head quarter and met with Dr. Hyang Suk Cho, Director of Division for Creative Convergence Education and her team to assess the Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics (STEAM) program and discuss possible cooperation areas for the future collaboration.
Dr. Hyang Suk Cho welcomed all the delegates and highlighted the role of KOFAC and its functions. It was established in 1967 as a non-profit organization and currently operating under the Ministry of Education of the Republic of Korea. KOFAC works in the areas of enhancing public understanding of science, developing creative human resources, and fostering convergent human resources for the future. It focuses on supporting implementation of the government policies and fostering the culture of creative economy in Korea. KOFAC launched its STEAM program in 2011 and it has been fully integrated into the national curriculum of KOREA across the board to foster creative talents and integrative thinking. Dr. Hyan Suk Cho shared that KOFAC has established over 50 innovation and creative labs across the country to nurture STEAM education. It is important to mention here that KOREA has adopted a uniform curriculum across all the schools regardless of their ownership; private or government. Whereas, the curriculum is regulated by the Ministry of Education.
Prof. Dr. Manzoor H. Soomro, President ECOSF greatly appreciated the efforts undertaken by the KOFAC in developing and integrating STEAM program into national curriculum in such a short span of time. Prof. Soomro talked about ECOSF and its program to promote S&T at high level and also at the school level. He also elucidated the role of ECOSF and his association with InterAcademy Partnership for Science Education Program (IAP SEP) as member of General Council in promotion of Inquiry Based Science Education (IBSE) across the globe, for which Dr. Inderjani and Ms. Aphya Hathem are also its members. Prof. Soomro emphasized that for advancement of science and technology we need strong science base with focus on learning by doing.
Dr. R. Indarjani appreciated the work being undertaken by the KOFAC. Dr. Indarjani briefly introduced the Southeast Asian Ministers of Education Organization (SEAMEO) which is an intergovernmental organization comprising of 11 member states of South East Asia to promote regional cooperation in education, science and culture in the region. She emphasized that STEAM is fundamental in progression for industrial era and world fully acknowledges it. The meeting ended with vote of thanks and all participating organizations looked forward to working together in promoting science and creative education in the region.