Deadline for submission of entries to SEAMEO-Japan award set Aug. 15

SOUTHEAST Asian schools, including those in the Philippines, can vie for this year's SEAMEO-Japan Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) Award.

SEAMEO, a Southeast Asian Ministers of Education Organization, is an intergovernmental treaty body that has been promoting education, science, and culture since 1965 with 26 specialist institutions located across Southeast Asia.

Three SEAMEO institutions are based in the Philippines, namely, the Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (SEARCA), the Regional Center for Educational Innovation and Technology or INNOTECH, and the Regional Centre for Public Health Hospital Administration, Environmental and Occupational Health or TROPMED Philippines.

Dr. Glenn Gregorio, SEARCA director, said the SEAMEO-Japan sustainability award which is held annually since 2021 focuses on raising awareness and fostering sustainable practices across Southeast Asia and Japan.

Gregorio said this year's theme is "Promoting Environmental Education Through Utilizing Renewable Energy."

All public and private educational levels, from kindergarten to Grade 12, as well as vocational and technical schools, are eligible.

The first prize winner stands to receive $1,500 and a study tour to Japan for the four to six students and teachers who are involved in planning and implementing the school's activities.

The second and third prize winners will receive $1,000 and $500, respectively while a special prize of $1,000 from the SEAMEO Secretariat will be awarded to the best program carried out in small schools of less than 250 students.

Gregorio is encouraging all eligible schools to enter now to showcase sustainability and innovation regionally, with submissions closing on August 15, 2023.

He said the submitted entry must meet specific criteria, focusing on its relevance to promoting environmental education through renewable energy utilization.

The award is a collaboration of the SEAMEO, the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology in Japan (MEXT), and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (Unesco) Multisectoral Regional Office in Bangkok.