Palestinian children use laptops at the Ziad Abu Ein School. (AP Photo/Majdi Mohammed)
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Just a few years ago, such scenes were unthinkable in most Palestinian classrooms. Like elsewhere in the Arab world, schools in the Palestine have traditionally emphasized memorization and obedience over critical thinking and creativity.Ziad Abu Ein is one of 54 "smart teaching schools" introduced last year.Dibas said the goal is to eliminate testing from the classroom. Instead, she said students need to enjoy the learning process to absorb information.This year's first grade has nearly tripled to 43 students.Education Minister Sabri Seidam also introduced vocational training in grades seven, eight and nine last year to meet the needs of the market.It noted that 60 percent of the region's population is under 30, the world's second-youngest after sub-Saharan Africa.The salaries of teachers are very poor, the classes are overcrowded, and schools lack the essential infrastructure," said Saeda Affouneh, director of the E-Learning Center at al-Najah University in the West Bank.She praised the changes taking place in Palestinian schools.
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