U.S. Calls for Strengthening E-Learning Efforts in APEC Region

November 7, 2002

Secretary Powell made the initial announcement at APEC’s 10th annual meeting of economic leaders in Mexico last weekend, calling on the APEC economies to develop a long-range strategy on e-learning and pledged U.S. assistance to accomplish the mission.

Secretary Powell acknowledged recent efforts by the U.S. in cooperation with APEC to take advantage of the wealth of opportunities created by the information technology revolution. He highlighted three recent areas of e-learning:

  • On Oct. 21, 2002, Secretary Paige and Zhou Ji, vice minister of education of the People’s Republic of China, signed a memorandum of understanding to jointly build an E-Language Project using Web-based technology to help students and educators learn a second language beginning with English and Chinese, free of charge on the Internet;

  • U.S. companies are providing computer training to information technology professionals and other citizens from all over the APEC region as part of the Human Capacity Building Promotion Program coordinated by China; and

  • The U.S. Department of Education has also joined with other APEC economies to develop the Asia Pacific Network for Education, a Web portal that will enable educators to more easily learn about best education practices and help students learn about the people and places of APEC.

“We are pleased to contribute to this exciting APEC effort to expand education opportunities for all children through technology,” Paige said. “The U.S. has much to offer in terms of technological expertise, and we have much to learn as well from colleagues whose students score among the highest in math and science in the world. The e-learning effort will enhance mutual understanding and improve education for children around the globe.”

The APEC forum was established in 1989 to promote economic cooperation and integration in the Pacific region. The United States was a driving force in APEC’s creation, as a means of anchoring the United States more firmly in the region in the post-Cold War era. APEC has grown to 21 members, including four other economies in the western hemisphere (Canada, Chile, Mexico and Peru).

November 6, 2002

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