Rabat – A public high school in Eastern Morocco is planning a new contest that will bring students across Morocco together. Sijilmasa high school in Errachidia, calls it the “Sijilmasa Challenge,” and they hope the idea will spread across Morocco.
Naaim Elhoussaine, a teacher at the school, developed the challenge because he wanted his students to improve their self-confidence and language skills using what they have learned in class.
The competition will have a central question or prompt that students will need to discuss. This year, the topic of conversation will be “If you were a leader, what would you do to make a better future for your country?”
Students will have to film themselves asking another English-speaking Moroccan the question and take part in a five-minute conversation about the topic. Competitors will then have to send their videos to the official Sijilmasa high school email.
The competition is a tool for public educators to work around the fewer resources they have per student compared to private schools.
The Moroccan public school system has long been accused of resource mismanagement, and as private schools become more popular, students are seeing differences in education qualities based on socioeconomic conditions.
One of the areas public schools lack in is developing the English communication skills its students need.
The Sijilmasa Challenge plans to continue every year, giving Moroccan students in the public system an opportunity to develop effective English communication, in addition to promoting critical thinking about issues in Moroccan society.
The competition began on December 1st and will close on the 31st. Interested students are encouraged to check the school’s website for additional information about the contest.