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Rabat – Morocco’s Minister of Education Saaid Amzazi reiterated the importance of human capital and higher education in Morocco’s new social development model during a webinar hosted by Fez’s Sidi Mohamed Ben Abdellah University.
King Mohammed VI announced a new social development model in 2019. The King stated that Morocco would reform its current education model to stimulate development in Morocco and present new opportunities for Morocco’s next generation.
Amzazi noted the progress made by the Special Commission on the Development Model (CSMD) is staying on track with the development model’s current timeline. The King created the CMSD in December 2019 to liaise with Moroccan society and the government.
Additionally, Amzazi noted the recent increase in enrollment in Morocco’s higher education institutions. Ten years ago, only 15% of 18-24-year-old Moroccans enrolled in higher education. Now, nearly 42% are enrolled in university.
There is also an increase in the need for on-campus housing as approximately one million students live on campus in 2020, up 400,000 in the past decade.
Morocco’s new social development model currently focuses on social advancement through new opportunities in higher education. The minister underlined Morocco’s desire to compete in fields such as science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM), and economics by offering new opportunities in industry 4.0 and robotics.
Industry 4.0 is the new wave of technological advancement that seeks to digitize the world through projects such as the internet of things and the use of AI technologies.
Other areas of Morocco’s current education system need reforms such as the lack of a standardized language in higher education.
In 2019, the CMSD held a conference with students of Mohammed VI Polytechnic University to receive feedback from students on the issues with Morocco’s educational system.
Yousef Alasad spoke about the current linguistic situation in higher education and noted that students are often forced to translate between languages or study in three different languages which can add another level of difficulty when learning new material.
“In primary school I spoke Moroccan Darija or Modern Standard Arabic but after receiving my BAC I learned in a mixture of French and Arabic.”
Alasad added that Morocco’s new social development model should reform the education system to focus on Arabic as the primary language of instruction.
Amzazi commented on the complex linguistic situation of Morocco’s education system and argued that the use of the Arabic language has been successful across all disciplines.
The commission will continue to host discussions on the development model and work to create new opportunities for the next generation of professionals in Moroccan society.