Gaza's Second Learning Communities Conference for the Model Schools Network (MSN) Program was held at the ARCH Med Hotel in Gaza City on June 30. 2011. It was attended by 143 educators from 12 private MSN Schools, as well as guests from education-based organizations in Gaza. Twenty-four presentations by teachers in the subjects of math, science, English and technology took place in the four halls of the conference facility.
The teachers had the opportunity to share ideas, exchange knowledge and tell their own stories about the effect of putting into practice the new teaching methodologies promoted by the MSN professional development component. Sahar Yousef, a science teacher at Al Mahd School commented that the conference was a unique opportunity to share classroom experiences with colleagues, especially his action research. ٍShe noted, "We presented our success stories about engaging our students in education and actively involving them in experiments. My presentation was about recycling natural waste to create compost."
Mr. Majed Abed al Bari from Al Zahra' Private School reflected on the many positive changes at the school while being involved in the MSN Program. He said, "I would like to thank both USAID and AMIDEAST for this great opportunity that allowed us to share with others our school improvement experience." Participants were particularly pleased to have the chance to discuss educational issues with colleagues from other schools.
The closing ceremony for the one-day gathering featured an acknowledgment and reflection on all the work accomplished so far in the MSN Gaza Program. Awards were presented to all conference participants. Teachers who presented action research projects at the conference were awarded HP printers.