1. The First Meeting of the ASEAN Ministers of Education was convened in Manila on 8-9 December 1977. The Meeting was preceded by a Meeting of Senior Officials in Manila on 6-7 December 1977.
2. The Meeting as attended by H.E. Sjarif Thajeb, Minister of Education and Culture of Indonesia; H.E. Datuk Chan Siang Sun, Deputy Minister of Education of Malaysia; H.E. Chai Chong Yii, Senior Minister of State for Education of Singapore; H.E. Kaw Swasdipanich, Deputy Minister of Education of Thailand; H.E. Juan L. Manuel, Secretary of Education and Culture of the Philippines; and their respective delegations. H.E. H.R. Dharsono, Secretary-General of the ASEAN Secretariat was also in attendance.
3. H.E. Juan L. Manuel, leader of the Philippine delegation, was unanimously elected Chairman of the Meeting.
4. The Ministers of Education and their respective delegations were received by H.E. President Ferdinand E. Marcos on 8 December 1977. on this occasion, the Ministers briefed the President on their work and discussions. The President then stressed the importance which the ASEAN Heads of Governments attach to education and its crucial role in development in ASEAN. The President commended the ASEAN Sub-Committee on Education, together with its Task Force, for the formulation f various projects of the ASEAN Network of Development Education Centers. He also called for a comparative study of the educational systems of the member countries in order to carry on a more effective collaboration in education in the region.
5. The Ministers examined the projects and activities in the field of education within the spirit of the ASEAN Declaration of 1967 and the Declaration of ASEAN Concord of 1976. They approved the establishment of an ASEAN Network of Development Education Centers. The Network envisages to undertake, among others, the following initial projects:
- work education for in-school and out-of school youths,
- teacher education reform,
- test development
- management information system for education, and
- special education for the handicapped.
The Ministers considered these Projects significant because they respond to the mandate of the ASEAN Heads of Government to strengthen collaboration in education in the region. Furthermore, the Ministers directed that the Regional Coordinating Committee (RCC) meet as soon as possible to implement the foregoing projects.
6. The Ministers exchanged views on the concept of an ASEAN University.
7. The Ministers expressed their sincere appreciation to the Government and people of the Republic. of the Philippines for the warm hospitality accorded to the delegates and for the excellent facilities and arrangements made for the Meeting.
8. The Meeting was held in traditional spirit of ASEAN cordiality and solidarity.