Thursday, June 21, 2018

Buhari's High Score on Education

President Muhammadu Buhari

When teachers cannot pass their exams what are they suppose to teach the children? It is a very tragic situation we are in. 

Our country is facing numerous challenges in education and all other sectors as a result of historical abuses, mindless impunity and corruption is not news to anyone.

An estimated 13.2 million children out of school, high illiteracy level, infrastructural deficit and decay, unqualified teachers, and inadequate instructional materials, to mention some of the challenges, this shows the effect of decades of neglect that the educational sector has suffered.

President Buhari’s promises include

 - A full review of the Universal Basic Education Act with emphasis on gender equity in primary, secondary school enrolment whilst improving the quality and substance of our schools.

-Targeting up to 20 percent of the annual budget for this critical sector whilst making substantial investments in training quality teachers at all levels of the educational system.

-Reduce malpractices in the sector to a low level.

-Enhance teacher training and improve the competence of teachers in the light of the 21st Century.

– Provide one meal a day for all primary school pupils as this will create jobs in agriculture, catering, and delivery services.

-Develop and promote effective use of innovative teaching methods/materials in schools.

-Ensure a greater proportion of expenditure on university education to help improve the sector.

-Establish at least six new universities of Science and Technology with satellite campuses in various states.

-Address the out-of-school children phenomenon.

-Ensure 30 million Nigerians become literate within three years.

-Re-negotiate the 2009 Agreement with unions in the tertiary sector.

-Academic stability at all levels.

-Attracting best brains to the teaching profession.

-Reducing the percentage counterpart fund paid by states to ease their access to funds.

-Providing e-learning, technical and vocational education and training, education data and planning and adult literacy including special needs education.

-Providing educational support to deportees.

-Re-emphasising ban on tuition fees in federal universities

Achievements recorded

-Presented a roadmap for ‘radical change’ in the education sector between 2016 and 2019.

-Introduction of national headcount of pupils and personnel in all primary and junior secondary schools.

-Compulsory basic education for pupils especially in Bayelsa State.

-Implementation of open distance and flexible learning for 25 polytechnics.

-Approval of N1.9 billion intervention fund for each university.

– Introduction of the school feeding programme.

-Modification of the United Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) for candidates seeking admission into the higher institutions of learning by introducing Central Admission Processing System.

– Making JAMB, Nigeria’s foremost admission body to tertiary institutions, not only more transparent but also more productive.

-Approval of 15 university online learning centers.

-Revamping data-collection system in the education sector.

-Introduction of Teachers’ professional examination.

Whilst we acknowledge the work done, there is still more work to be done. More importantly, the President Buhari administration needs to take solid measures towards addressing the issue of producing unemployable graduates by some institutions. If not, this negates all the good work done.

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