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Education strategy promises great prospects

Interview with  Rector of State Physical Culture and Sports Academy, member of the MilliMajlis Aghajan Abiyev

Q: President Ilham Aliyev has recently inked an order endorsing a plan of action related to the implementation of the State Strategy on the development of education in Azerbaijan. How will this contribute to the development of education in the country?

A: National leader Heydar Aliyev attached great importance to education and sport as early as in Soviet era. Much has been done to develop education in Azerbaijan in the past 10 years. A worthy successor of the national leader, President Ilham Aliyev too attaches a particular importance to education. In 2013, the head of state signed the State Strategy on the development of education in Azerbaijan in 2013.

We, education workers, must try our hardest to ensure successful execution of this strategy. Every education worker, irrespective of his position, must be involved. The triumph of this strategy must be a key priority for every Azerbaijani intellectual.

The strategy provides an insight into the state of education in Azerbaijan, its essence and quality. It provides for comprehensive development of education – from education methodics to the establishment of state-of-the-art infrastructure and resources of education.

The strategy stresses the importance and necessity of applying new education technologies and best practices and standards. And the main task here is to prepare young, highly-skilled specialists. Education strategy promises great prospects. We should expand the application of European-standard system of student performance evaluation system.

Q: The head of state signed an executive order to increase salaries and amount of work of teachers of secondary schools who passed knowledge and quality assessment. How will this order impact the quality of education and welfare of teachers?

A: The order signed by President Ilham Aliyev is of particular importance from two points of view. First, teachers who successfully pass the attestation will have their salaries increase. Second, their amount of work will be raised and they will have an opportunity to spend more time with their pupils. This order will stimulate teachers to improve their kills, which, for its part, will ensure the improvement of quality of education. I believe that the order signed by President Ilham Aliyev will comprehensively contribute to the development of education in Azerbaijan.

Q: Mr. Abiyev, we would like you to highlight the development of sports in our country. What achievements were made in sports in 2014?

A: Much can be said about the development of sport in Azerbaijan. and what makes us proud is that this fact is confirmed by leading figures of the world`s sport movement. For example, President of the European Olympic Committees Patrick Hickey, who attended the opening ceremony of the Masally Olympic Sport Complex, said: “From geographical point of view your country is located far from Europe. However, accomplishments in sport and construction of such nice complex in Masally, you have occupied place in the heart of Europe.”

As you know we will host the inaugural European games in a couple of months. And we are preparing to the games very seriously. In this regard, the year 2014 marked great achievements of our athletes. They claimed a total of 805 medals in international tournaments and championships. This is 60 medals more than in 2013.  The most remarkable sporting event of 2014 was Nanjing Youth Olympic Games. Among 200 countries, Azerbaijan ranked 10th with 12 medals (5 golds, 6 silvers and 1 bronze).

Q: What about the preparation for the first European Games?

A: Relevant European organizations hail the preparation of our country for the inaugural European Games. Under Mehriban Aliyeva, member of the Executive Committee of the National Olympic Committee of the Republic of Azerbaijan, chair of the Baku 2015 European Games Organizing Committee, high-level preparation is carried out for the games. Tests are organized in order to ensure that every detail is ready to create necessary conditions for sportsmen’s high-level performance this summer. Many of the venues and facilities are ready. European experts believe that the games will be successfully organized.