Thousands of Chromebooks Distributed to Belizean Schools by Taiwan

Thousands of Chromebooks Distributed to Belizean Schools by Taiwan

Some 165 primary and secondary schools have received Chromebooks from the Ministry of Education through the Taiwanese Government.  The final distribution was done last Friday to the students of Wesley College.  According to Education Minister, Francis Fonseca, the 5000 Chromebooks were a gift from the President of Taiwan, Tsai Ing-wen to Prime Minister John Briceno.  

Francis Fonseca, Minister of Education: “This is a very generous gift and as both the CEO and the Ambassador said when President Tsai visited Belize she had a meeting with the Prime Minister and the Cabinet and I was a part of that meeting in Belmopan and at that meeting we were discussing all the different issues and challenges that we face and so we talked about education of course and we talked about the fact that we were just coming out COVID, two years of COVID, and that we had learned many important lessons during COVID having to do with access to technology, the importance of access to reliable technology. And immediately when we discussed that matter immediately the President of Taiwan said “we want to help with that issue. We want to help with closing the digital divide, closing the digital gap.” because this gift was really a gift from the President to the Prime Minister, wasn’t a git to the Ministry of Education. And the Prime Minister and Cabinet they could have decided what they wanted to do with these devices but in his wisdom and in the wisdom of my Cabinet colleagues they felt that it was important that we distribute these devices in a very transparent, equitable, accountable manner. And that’s what we’ve done. They handed all of the devices over to the Ministry of Education and our team at the Ministry of Education has prepared a very detailed distribution schedule, the CEO told you we can’t help everybody but we’re trying to do it in an equitable way across the country so every corner of Belize will be touched by this gift and we will ensure that students in every part of our country get access to some of these devices.”

Attending the handing over of the laptops at Wesley College was Taiwan’s Ambassador to Belize, Her Excellency Lily Li-Wen Hsu.  In her address to the students and faculty, the Ambassador encouraged the students to make use of the devices.

Lily-Li Wen Hsu, Ambassador Republic of China (Taiwan): “Taiwan is proud of being a faithful friend and development partner of Belize. We have always been willing to share our knowhow, experience, technology and resources with our good friend the Belizean Government and people. For decades our two countries have collaborated on various areas in line with the development goals of Belize. Among them any areas of our bilateral cooperation education is the most impactful one. When president Tsai visited this beautiful jewel earlier this year she was very impressed by the high extent the Belize Government and people cared for education and how much this country values it’s young generation. Hence the Taiwan government is more than happy to donate these Chromebooks to help improve digital learning skills of Belizean students and the educational environment of the country. There is an old Chinese saying “Gōng yù shàn qí shì, bì xiān lì qí qì”. Meaning, maybe one day you will learn Mandarin Chinese as well but let me explain it to you, “One must have good tools in order to do a good job.” So with the good tool being handed over to you it is hoped that you, the students, can improve your academic learning and digital skills in this rapidly evolving digital era.”

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