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February 5, 2014 11:32 am

Israel’s Peres Aims for Guinness Record With 6,500-Student Online Civics Class

avatar by Joshua Levitt

Israeli President Shimon Peres. Photo: WikiCommons

Israeli President Shimon Peres. Photo: WikiCommons

Israeli President Shimon Peres will on Thursday deliver what is expected to be the world’s largest online civics class, setting a new Guinness World Record, with 6,500 students from 215 classrooms.

In a statement on Wednesday, Peres’s spokesman said the class will be broadcast from Cisco’s Israeli headquarters, in Netanya, to Jewish and Arab students in Jerusalem, Beer Sheva, Tel Aviv, Kuseife, Ofakim, Dimona, Hadera, Tiberias, Tayibe, Nahariya, and other communities across Israel.

Meanwhile, Marco Frigatti, Senior Vice President of Guinness World Records, will be on hand to verify the record attempt.

Last year, Peres, 90, engaged young Israelis by hosting Q&A sessions via Facebook.

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“We live in a changing world and you have to change with it,” Peres said in October. “The new world is run by science and technology, it’s no use having an old mind in a new world. Those that fail to embrace the new age will be left behind.”

In the statement announcing the giant, online civics class, his spokesman said, “Israel is a world leader in the technology required for a record of this scale and there are currently efforts to introduce the technology into classrooms across the country.”

“The class will be a live example of the technology which will help digitalize education worldwide, reduce the distance between the center of countries and the periphery, reduce inequality in education and allow for lessons to be delivered by leading experts to thousands of pupils at the same time,” it said.

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