[FROM LEFT TO RIGHT]: Mrs. Janakie Karunaratne – Lead Philanthropy – South East Asia New Markets - Microsoft; Mr. Harsha Randeny - Director Cloud Solutions - Microsoft Sri Lanka and Maldives; Mr. Hasitha Abeywardena, Country Manager – Microsoft Sri Lanka and Maldives; Mr. Chithrananda – Secretary - Ministry of Education; Mr. Chandrasekara – State Secretary - Ministry of Education; Mr. Premathilaka – Additional Secretary - Ministry of Education; Mr. Ilapperuma - Director of Education – ICT
Microsoft and the Ministry of Education in Sri Lanka have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) on 14 May 2020 to advance remote pedagogy during a time when the health and safety of educators and students is paramount. The agreement will enable educators to embrace Microsoft Office 365 tools and build their IT competence, while efficiently engage students in virtual classrooms.
Under the MOU, Microsoft will support the Ministry by providing Students, Teachers, Pirivena, Teacher Training Schools and ministry officials with free access to Microsoft Office 365 tools, such as OneNote, Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Microsoft Teams, across PCs, tablets and smartphones to compliment a “distance learning” initiative for students and teachers.
The MOU was signed under the recommendation of the Presidential Task Force – Education to look into the continuation of the education sector during and after the COVID-19 pandemic. The agreement was signed by Secretary to the Ministry of Education N. H. M. Chithrananda and Country Manager for Microsoft Sri Lanka and Maldives Hasitha Abeywardena on behalf of their respective organizations. Microsoft General Manager for Southeast Asia New Markets in Asia Pacific Sook Hoon Cheah also joined the signing via Microsoft Teams.