Reshaping and upgrading education is a global imperative. The need for a systemic approach was once again confirmed during the COVID-19 pandemic. Like other countries, Moldova has to apply a comprehensive and sustainable solution to adapt to current requirements and ensure its future.
At present, in Moldova, there are 1,255 active primary and secondary schools with 27,426 teachers and 333,144 students. Between 2000 and 2020, the dynamics of the primary and secondary Education System:
• 318 schools were closed;
• The number of teachers decreased by 14,954;
• The number of students decreased by 298,119;
• The number of gymnasium graduates decreased by 30,079.
Since the arrival of the Covid-19 Pandemic to Moldova, the State (as well as the absolute majority of the national governments in the world) had difficulties in guaranteeing the right to education for most of the students. The traditional learning system collapsed, and there are no reliable alternatives for all the Moldovan schools. According to UNDP, "In the Republic of Moldova, as in many other countries, education was among the first sectors hit by the COVID-19 crisis - in a way no one could have imagined." The pandemic crisis emphasized the lack of adaptability/flexibility of the Moldovan Education and highlighted the country's deficiencies.
In the context of internationally wide-spread digitalization, the GREATEST BARRIERS to achieve a digital educational process in a qualitative, efficient, and uniform way in the Republic of Moldova are:
• Poor distribution and reduced access to high-speed Internet for students and teachers throughout the country;
• Severe lack or total absence of end-user equipment (tablets, laptops, etc.);
• Inadequate digital literacy, non-existent training to provide and enhance necessary digital skills to all the students and teachers;
• The teaching methods and materials are not adapted to the use in modern cyberspace.
Integrating the best existing practices at the national, European, and international levels, e-Dome is a UNIQUE, COMPREHENSIVE, FLEXIBLE, AGE-NEUTRAL, GENDER-NEUTRAL AND UNIVERSAL systemic solution that provides the most efficient approach in the algorithm of knowledge delivering.
The e-Dome is an approach that combines the existing technologies, equipment, information, and courses, as well as those that will be created along the way. It builds a complete Knowledge Transfer System throughout the country. THE SYSTEM DOES NOT COMPETE WITH ANY CURRENT GOVERNMENTAL PRACTICE OR PRIVATE INITIATIVE. IT INTENDS TO CREATE THE NECESSARY INFRASTRUCTURE TO SUCCESSFULLY IMPLEMENT THEM.
THE OVERALL OBJECTIVE is to ensure that resources are equally accessible to those involved in the educational process. The national knowledge transfer system e-Dome is a unique solution to make the Education System a complete, universal, and sustainable one.
THE PURPOSE OF THE E-DOME is to provide to each child, living in any corner of the country, even in the smallest and most remote localities, the opportunity to benefit from high-quality education and training, to gain and preserve equal access to the best educational services in the country and abroad, to create a better future in the Republic of Moldova and to contribute to the country's development.
THE NATIONAL KNOWLEDGE TRANSFER SYSTEM E-DOME CONSISTS OF THE FOLLOWING BLOCKS:
• THE E-DOME KNOWLEDGE FACTORY;
• THE E-DOME KNOWLEDGE TRANSFER NETWORK;
• THE E-DOME KNOWLEDGE TRANSFER DEVICES.
The E-DOME KNOWLEDGE FACTORY has three key components:
E-LEARNING – set of interactive education and training programs for all subjects and courses. For example, 3D modeling of chemical processes used for the rapid and efficient teaching of chemistry, instead of classical laboratory experiments. In this way, the need to equip the laboratories in all educational institutions disappears, and all the chemical experiments are to be performed in the system and subsequently viewed at all schools in the country. At the same time, students will have the opportunity to create their own scientific experiments. The viewing can take place both online and through lessons/experiments previously recorded and included in the e-Dome database. Similarly, interactive study systems will be adapted to any subject/course where they are needed.
E-LIBRARY – a fundamental set of knowledge within the school curriculum - electronic textbooks, encyclopedias, video lessons, etc. All the textbooks currently supplied according to the curriculum will be contained in the e-Library, in scanned .pdf format, with embedded text search feature by keywords. The content of the textbooks will be classified according to the study topics in the curriculum. The information within the e-Library segment will be pre-selected, formatted, and adapted to the particularities of the curriculum in such a way that the flow of inappropriate or irrelevant information will be omitted.
E-LECTURES – is a platform for teaching live lessons to students. The teachers, from the e-Dome headquarters or any other location, through the platform, will simultaneously teach up to 300 students located in different schools all over the country (ratio 1:300). Through e-Lectures, these students will have equal access to high-quality teaching.
THE KEY ELEMENTS OF THE E-DOME KNOWLEDGE TRANSFER NETWORK ARE:
• THE E-DOME NATIONWIDE EDUCATIONAL FIBER OPTIC NETWORK (CONNECTING ALL THE DISTRICT CENTERS AND SCHOOLS IN EVERY VILLAGE);
• THE E-DOME WI-FI, 4G AND 5G HOTSPOTS.
The E-DOME NATIONWIDE EDUCATIONAL FIBER OPTIC Network is a high-speed broadband Internet network, that is the only technology suitable for unlimited data transfer of any kind, including HD video. The estimated length of the e-Dome Nationwide Educational Fiber Optic Network is 4,000 km, of which 1531 km of underground fiber duct are already in place.
The E-DOME 4G AND 5G HOTSPOTS is a network of antennas installed in the localities of the Republic of Moldova, so that students and students can study from any point located in or outside the school using laptops and tablets, that will be compatible with both Wi-Fi and 5G.
The E-DOME WI-FI SPOTS are areas with wireless coverage located in schoolyards and residential zones, in local central areas, squares, parks, markets, public catering institutions, and other locations popular among students and students, where they can access the e-Dome even after school, throughout the day, and continue the learning process with the help of laptops and the coverage of the e-Dome network.
The educational curriculum material, stored in the e-Dome and transmitted through the Knowledge Transfer Network, will be received by each pupil and by every teacher on the E-DOME KNOWLEDGE TRANSFER DEVICES: laptops - portable devices, equipped with Wi-Fi/4G/5G connection.
The equipment for all the students will be configured so that it can be used only within the Knowledge Transfer Network, and limited access to the Internet resources. This will ensure the efficiency of the equipment and System's usage and reduce the risk of theft.
The management of the System will be performed by a specialized administration entity – the NATIONAL E-DOME OPERATOR, responsible for proper functioning of all the e-Dome elements, including building and maintaining the whole Knowledge Transfer Network, creating and managing the Knowledge Factory, and ensuring equipment rotation and technical service. The Operator will provide regular training and support to all the Users. The training itself will include online and offline activities.