Saudi teen dancing to ‘Macarena’ in traffic arrested

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Video grab of the Saudi teen dancing in the streets of Jeddah.
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Video grab of the Saudi teen dancing in the streets of Jeddah.
Updated 22 August 2017

Saudi teen dancing to ‘Macarena’ in traffic arrested

JEDDAH: Saudi authorities arrested a teen after appearing in a viral video clip dancing to the 1990’s viral Los del Rio hit “Macarena” in the middle of the city’s famous Tahlia Street.
According to Sabq, the official spokesman for Makkah police, Col. Atti bin Attia Al-Qurashi, said the teen’s conduct is considered “a disruption of traffic and violation of public morality.”
Al-Qurashi confirmed that the police in Jeddah, in coordination with Makkah patrols, managed to arrest the 14-year-old after analyzing the video clip and gathering the necessary security information. Authorities will hear his statements before referring him to the Public Prosecution.
Twitter has been abuzz with the debate over a 40-second video of the incident as tweeps took to the social media platform to air their conflicting views on the widely circulated, unusual scene.
Some viewers condemned his “discourteous” act and demanded that he be punished. “Does he know that school is nearing? Or is he one of those spoiled kids going to private schools?” said one commenter who added that this is the best news he received about his arrest so he does not influence other teens. “The photographer should also be held,” another suggested.
Others pointed out that he is a child who is doing what many children at his age should be doing — having fun. “Not everything should be solved through police and public prosecution,” one tweep said. “He is just a kid who wanted to enjoy his time. Don’t make a big fuss about it.”

Other Twitter users went as far as to call him a “hero,” something that people need in their lives.

“Some people were indoctrinated to denounce everything joyful. The kid is really a hero because he dared to spread joy in the presence of all those wretched people,” said Tariq who encouraged the teen to “dance away,” and not care about the downers.

There are many theories surrounding the reason behind his off-the-cuff dance routine. Several people suggested that he could be involved in some sort of a challenge with a friend, while others said this could be the result of a long summer holiday, leading youngsters to find inventive ways to keep themselves entertained.
The viral clip brought up, once again, the issue of the apparent absence of religious police on Saudi streets, and many social media users attacked the government’s newest entertainment body, the General Entertainment Authority, over its organization of various music and dance activities which, they say, may have influenced the teen’s conduct.


Global organizations commend Saudi Arabia’s role in e-learning

Updated 23 October 2020

Global organizations commend Saudi Arabia’s role in e-learning

JEDDAH: Six international organizations have completed two studies on e-learning in the Kingdom and praised its efforts in providing a rapid response, multiple options and continuous improvement during the coronavirus pandemic.
The studies involved the participation of 342,000 respondents and were conducted under the supervision of the Kingdom’s National Center for e-Learning.
The center said that the global organizations completed two comprehensive studies on the experience of public and higher education in Saudi Arabia during the pandemic, with the aim of documenting and studying the reality of the experience and coming up with initiatives to develop e-learning practices in accordance with current global practices and standards.
The studies were conducted with the participation of students, faculty members, teachers, parents and school leaders.
The number of participants in the public education study reached 318,000, while the number of participants in the higher education study reached 24,000.
The first study was prepared by the Online Learning Consortium (OLC), with the participation of the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE), Quality Matters (QM), the UNESCO Institute of Information Technologies in Education (IITE), the National Research Center for Distance Education and Technological Advancements (DETA) in the US.
The second study was prepared by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) with the cooperation of the Harvard Graduate School
of Education.
In the studies, reference comparisons were made with more than 193 countries. The two studies showed the Kingdom’s distinction in the diversity of options, including, for example, electronic content and satellite channels available for e-learning in public education.

NUMBER

342k

The studies on e-learning involved the participation of 342,000 respondents and were conducted under the supervision of the Kingdom’s National Center for e-Learning.

The percentage of countries that succeeded in providing these at the national level was only 38 percent.
The study conducted by the OECD and the Harvard Graduate School of Education included a comparison of the Kingdom’s response to education during the COVID-19 pandemic with 37 member states.
The results showed the Kingdom’s progress in 13 out of 16 indicators on the average of
these countries.
The study also revealed that teachers received significant support to overcome obstacles to e-learning.
The study of public education indicated that there was a clear strategy for the Ministry of Education to reopen schools in the Kingdom and address any issues.
OLC hailed the efforts of the Saudi Ministry of Education in dealing with the crisis by providing a variety of options for e-learning, and the quick response to the pandemic and immediate shift to remote instruction.
The two studies recommended 71 proposed development initiatives for public education and 78 proposed development initiatives for higher education.
The National Center for e-Learning is working in coordination with the Ministry of Education to present the initiatives and begin their implementation.
The center announced that the organizations that conducted the studies would publish their results and complete the second phase at the end of the current semester.

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