The Arab League Education, Cultural and Scientific Organization (ALECSO) should undergo structural reforms to improve its performance on the field, its chief said Friday.
Director General Dr. Abdullah Hamad Mhareb, at a news conference at ALECSO's Tunis-based headquarters, said the organization should use up-to-date communication technology and reconsider its employment policy.
He said 60 percent of the organization's budget should be spent on projects and 30 on salaries, noting that ALECSO suffered from failure of many member states to pay their arrears that totalled USD 63 million.
Mhareb hoped ALECSO's USD 11 million budget would be increased to at least USD 50 million to carry out programs and projects on the ground for the service of culture, civilization and Arabic language.
He said the Arab countries should have compulsory education programs for all children, which would mean punishing every family banning its children from education at the age of six.
Mhareb attributed "acts of extremism and terrorism" in the Arab world to illiteracy, but they would diminish with the spread of science and culture. "The continuation and terrible spread of illiteracy in many Arab countries is a clear failure of ALECSO 40 years after its establishment." Mhareb said ALECSO would attempt to improve the Arab national all the way to improving education quality.
He called on member countries to establish specialized educational institutions to improve quality of education to "build the Arab human being" away from politics and to focus on moderation, openness and forgiveness.
The ALECSO chief said the organization was also paying special attention to education in Palestine and Syria, and Arab language programs in Sudan, Somalia and other African countries.