SEAMEO Centers in Indonesia held the “SEAMEO Outlook Pendidikan 21” on Saturday, 6 February 2021 as an expression to support the Merdeka Belajar and Kampus Merdeka programs of the Ministry of Education and Culture of the Republic of Indonesia (MoEC). These two concepts mean providing easy-access and flexibility for students in getting education everywhere and at any time, based on their preferences, talents and competencies. This event held in SEAMEO BIOTROP Campus in Bogor aimed to establish common directions that can be provided by the seven SEAMEO Centers in Indonesia to support the programs of MoEC involving schools, universities, colleges, and other stakeholders.
Experts from various fields of educations actively participated in this event. The experts ranged from the experts on Early Childhood and Parenting up to the experts on higher education, from the experts on natural sciences, mathematics and languages, nutrition sciences up to the experts on applied biology tropical experts. This event is expected to come up with ideas for developing human resources with qualified characters based on Pancasila.
“It is important to develop the mindset of educators for innovating various means of educational methods to produce significant impacts on academic performance of students”, said Prof Arif Satria, the rector of Institut Pertanian Bogor (IPB) as well as the Chairman of SEAMEO BIOTROP Governing Board Members in his remarks.
Furthermore, Prof Arif emphasized the urgent needs of mindset changes from fixed mindset to growing mindset. We need to encourage teachers and lecturers to nurture the students’ characters into thinking positively and progressively.
In regards to the Merdeka Belajar dan Kampus Merdeka programs, the seven SEAMEO centers in Indonesia have done many studies and implemented many learning models to develop students having qualified characters based on Pancasila. The same studies are also carried out toward educators, teachers and lecturers to become initiators in advancing the learning process.
Dr Zulhamsyah Imran, the Director of SEAMEO BIOTROP, stated that the seven SEAMEO Centers in Indonesia have changed the learning approach from teaching base model into student centers, which put the students in becoming the center of interests and more actively drive the learning process, while the teachers and lecturers are more focused on being facilitators and mediators.
“However the function of teachers and lecturers as educators are still the main focus of the seven SEAMEO Centers in Indonesia,” said Dr Zulhamsyah.
Dr Hendarman, the Acting Head of Cooperation and Public Relation Bureau of the Ministry of Education and Culture of the Republic of Indonesia, stated that the seven SEAMEO Centers in Indonesia can support the Merdeka Belajar program in several aspects, such as: 1. Strengthen the instructors/educators of teachers learning program through the educators development programs; 2. Establlish the digital connectivity to improve teachers’ and students’ literacy competencies and to develop the next generation school spaces; 3. Establish collaborations between world-class researchers and local researchers using the established networks; 4) Embrace private sectors to provide paying-based training for educators by holding industrial-based learning program through webinars; 5) Support the 3-semester-out-of-campus activities by providing trainings, internship and research for university students in each of the seven SEAMEO Centers to establish synergy among the seven SEAMEO Centers, educators and students in preparing the future qualified human resources.
In supporting the Merdeka Belajar and Kampus Merdeka programs, each SEAMEO Centers in Indonesia presented their respective programs, as follows:
- SEAMEO BIOTROP: Establish Learning Approach System called the "online hybrid Learning System”;
- SEAMEO SEAMOLEC: Increase the quality of Long Distance Online Learning System in the New Normal Era;
- SEAMEO RECFON: Develop Healthy and Nutrition-Sufficient Human Resource Program;
- SEAMEO QITEP in Mathematic: Establish the Mathematics Merdeka Belajar Program;
- SEAMEO QITEP in Science: Establish Priority Program of SEAQIS in Supporting Merdeka Belajar Program;
- SEAMEO QITEP in Language: Develop Merdeka Belajar Policy through Internationalization of Bahasa Indonesia and Establishing School Literacy Club;
- SEAMEO CECCEP: Develop Qualified Human Resources through Merdeka Belajar in Early Childhood.