Secondary School Students

The Niger State Government on Thursday awarded the contract to renovate and reconstruct three of its secondary schools at the cost of about N2.3bn.


The Permanent Secretary of the state Ministry of Education, Shuaibu Adamu, during the post-executive council meeting press briefing at the Government House, Minna.


Adamu, who represented his commissioner at the briefing, said the new projects included the conversion of Baro Government Secondary School to a boarding school at a cost of N382.2m and the rehabilitation of Tegina Secondary School awarded at the cost of N290m.

He added that the rehabilitation of the Muazu Ibrahim Commercial Secondary School in Kontogora would cost the state government N361.4m.


Adamu said that work had reached appreciable level in the reconstruction of six other selected science schools under

the government’s School Development Programme inaugurated about six months ago.


The permanent secretary added that the government had released about N1.7bn counterpart marching funds to the Universal Basic Education to enable the state to begin renovation works in 400 primary schools as soon as the Federal Government released its funds to the scheme.


Adamu said that government had completed arrangement to revive three teacher training colleges in the three senatorial zones of the state aimed at improving the standard of education in the state.


According to him, the Women Teachers’ College in Minna will be revived and repositioned for the production of qualified teachers for the improvement of learning and teaching in public schools.


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Aniebo designed a malaria-detecting mobile app

Two Nigerian students, Eyenimi Ndimou and Ify Aniebo, have made Nigeria proud in London. They have been shortlisted for the prestigious award to find London’s most innovative international student.


They duo are being recognised for their outstanding innovation Two Nigerian students, Eyenimi Ndimou and Ify Aniebo have been shortlisted for the prestigious award to find London’s most innovative international student, Ventures Africa report.


Ndimou, a student at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine is being recognised for creating a mobile app that diagnoses birth asphyxia by listening out for a certain frequency in a baby’s cry. The app allows for a swift detection of asphyxia in babies, and consequently, a prompt referral for a potentially lifesaving treatment.


Aniebo, also a student of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, designed a malaria-detecting mobile app which transforms any mobile phone with a camera into a microscope.


The app, which detects malaria from blood samples, also indicates the type of malaria and prescribes possible courses of treatment. Both apps have been shortlisted as part of the Mayor of London’s Internationl Student Innovation Awards, placing the Nigerian innovators at the forefront of innovations in London universities.


An excited Ndimou said the award would mean “that my team and I are one step closer to realising our dream of saving millions of new-born lives in Nigeria and many other developing countries.”


The International Student Innovation Awards was set up to highlight the work of international students in the United Kingdom, and also to provide students with some financial assistance to take their innovation to the next stage of development. The winner will receive the sum of £10,000 to kick-start their business.


Meanwhile, a 17 years old 200 level Nigerian student in Amity University, India, Esther Ruby Daniel has won various medals in different sporting events in the higher institution. Miss Daniel who is from Akwa Ibom state won silver medal during All Indian Law Student University Game during her first month in the school. For this year alone, she won gold medal in February, Gold medal in 200 meters, Silver medal in long jump and Gold medal in 100 meters all within this month.


Ekong received his masters’ degree in electrical and electronic engineering from Tokai University in Tokyo, Japan where he achieved the feat recording the university’s highest score in the past 50 years. In his first semester, the Nigerian genius solved a maths puzzle that has been unsolvable in the last 30 years.


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Esther Ruby Daniel

A Nigerian girl, Esther Ruby Daniel, has distinguished herself in far-away India – Miss Daniel has become the number one athlete in Amity University, Haryana, India.


She has won various medals in different sporting events in the university A 17 years old 200 level student in Amity University, India, Esther Ruby Daniel has won various medals in different sporting events in the University, The Nation reports.


Miss Daniel being honoured in her school in India. Photo credit: The Nation Miss Daniel who is from Akwa Ibom state won silver medal during All Indian Law Student University Game during her first month in the school. For this year alone, she won gold medal in February, Gold medal in 200 meters, Silver medal in long jump and Gold medal in 100 meters all within this month.


While she won golden cup in her final game on Tuesday, October 18, she won bronze medal for the university on Friday, October 21 in 100 meters during a competition with other universities.


In a statement issued in Abuja, Miss Daniel’s father, Reverend Daniel Thomas said: “Esther Ruby Daniel is now a pride to Amity University, pride to Nigeria and a pride to Africa. “Indian National newspapers published her performance on 28th October, 2016. She is now the best track haven won 1 bronze, 2 silvers, 2 golds and a golden cup and many sports certificates in one month. “She has promised to make Nigeria proud before her graduation.”


Miss Daniel’s achievements is coming barely another Nigerian from Akwa Ibom state, Ufot Ekong succeeded in breaking a 50-year-record in Japan. Ekong received his masters’ degree in electrical and electronic engineering from Tokai University in Tokyo, Japan where he achieved the feat recording the university’s highest score in the past 50 years.

In his first semester, the Nigerian genius solved a maths puzzle that has been unsolvable in the last 30 years.


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Prof. Is-haq Oloyede

The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board says it will adopt “pin vending”  for the 2017 UTME test, advising intending candidates to get familiar with the new approach.
The board’s Head of Media and Information, Dr. Fabian Benjamin, told the News Agency of Nigeria on Wednesday in Lagos that it would no longer use scratch card.


He said, “Candidates, wishing to sit for the 2017 UTME, should start getting themselves familiar with the newly adopted process of pin vending by the board. We must make ourselves open to change like it is obtained in other climes.

“We are no longer going back to the use of scratch card; that method is outdated. Candidates wishing to register for the examination will just make online payment and get a pin with which they can upload their data.

“This new pin vending will be accessible through the options of web payment, ATM issued cards like Visa, Verve, and Mastercard, online Quick Teller, mobile application and Bank Branch case/card.’’


Benjamin assured Nigerians that the board was working hard to address all the challenges experienced by candidates during its 2016 UTME as it was preparing for the 2017 diet.


He said that all hands were on deck to ensure a hitch-free examination across the country.

“Preparations are on to ensure that all the technical hitches that manifested in the 2016 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination do not arise again. That is not to say that the examination will be completely hitch-free.

“But we are deploying resources to correct the ones identified already. In the course of the examination, should there be any other new challenges, we will act promptly,” Benjamin added.
The spokesman also said that the board would begin validation of UTME centres across the country soon.

“We shall be going round to the proposed centres to check the state of their facilities and also to ensure that such facilities could accommodate a minimum of 250 candidates,’’ he said.


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*Appoints UNILAG, UNN, UNICAL, others as mentors


THE Federal Government yesterday gave its nod to the take-off of eight new private universities in Nigeria. This was sequel to a memo approved by the National Universities Commission, NUC, and presented to the Federal Executive Council, FEC, by the Federal Ministry of Education in Abuja, yesterday.


With this development, the number of universities in Nigeria has increased from 143 to 151, while the number of private universities has risen to 69 from 61.


National Universities Commission


The eight universities and their promoters include:


  • Anchor University, Ayobo, Lagos, owned by Deeper Christian Life Ministry.
  • Arthur Jarvis University, Akpabuyo, Cross River, engineered by the Clitter House Nigeria Limited.
  • Clifford University, Owerrinta, Abia, owned by Seventh Day Adventist Church.
  • Coal City University, Enugu, operated by African Thinkers Community of Inquiry College of Education, Enugu.
  • Crown-Hill University, Eiyenkorin, Kwara, floated by Modern Morgy and Sons Limited.
  • Dominican University, Ibadan, the brainchild of Order of Preachers, Nigerian Dominican Community.
  • Kola Daisi University, Ibadan came from Kola Daisi Foundation and Legacy University, Okija, an idea of The Good Idea Education Foundation.


Briefing State House correspondents at the end of the meeting presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, the Minister of State for Education, Professor Anthony Anwuka, said the reason for the approval was to give the teeming youths the opportunity to acquire university education Anwuka, who was joined by his counterparts in Aviation, Hadi Sirika, and Information, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, said: “The Ministry of Education submitted a memo to Council this morning seeking approval for eight private universities as recommended by NUC after very serious comprehensive and exhaustive compliance to the conditions that warrant such approval. Anwuka said the new universities would be supervised by the older universities within their zone for a period of three years to assist them put necessary infrastructure in place, adding that the supervision was in sync with the law.


He said: “While approving these universities for licensing provisionally for three years, the Universities should be mentored by some existing older Universities in Nigeria.


And those will include:


  • Anchor University will be mentored by University of Lagos, Akoka.
  • Arthur Jarvis University will be mentored by University of Calabar.
  • Cliffored will be mentored by University of Agriculture, Umudike.
  • Coal City University will be mentored by University of Nigeria, Nsukka.
  • Crown-Hill University will be mentored by University of Ilorin.
  • Dominican University will be mentored by University of Ibadan.
  • Kola Daisi University will mentored by University of Ibadan.
  • Legacy University will be mentored by Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka.”


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Educating the Nigerian Girl Child

From a global perspective, the girl child is generally considered highly vulnerable to several societal ills, especially in developing countries where it is believed that effective policies and calculated efforts are needed to safeguard the girl child from the detrimental effect of violence, limited access to education, neglect, abuse, gender disparities, among other challenges.


There is growing concern all over the world that decisive and urgent actions need to be taken to address these challenges by creating an enabling environment that will promote proper development of the girl child.


Unarguably, education and empowerment initiatives have been identified as crucial vehicles that can be utilized to correct the many troubles of the girl child and also drive sustainable development.


This year, attention of governments, non-governmental organisations, policy makers and stakeholders again turned to issues surrounding the girl child as the world observed the International Day of the Girl Child on October 11 with the theme “Girls’ Progress = Goals’ Progress: A Global Girl Data Movement” in line with the United Nations (UN) declaration. Gender inequalities This special day is set aside annually to raise public awareness on girls’ right and highlights gender inequalities that remain between girls and boys all over the world.


According to the UN, “there are 1.1 billion girls today, a powerful const-ituency for shaping a sustainable world that’s better for everyone. They are brimming with talent and creativity. But their dreams and potential are often thwarted by discrimination, violence and lack of equal opportunities.


There are glaring gaps in data and knowledge about the specific needs and challenges that girls face.” Like other developing countries, the girl child in Nigeria is also faced with most of the challenges confronting girls all over the world. One appalling example is the case of the 276 girls kidnapped in a school in Chibok, Borno State. The sufferings that the girls have been exposed to while in captivity for more than two years further highlight the urgency required in addressing girl child issues.


The 2016 International Day of the Girl Child brings to bear efforts being made by governments in Nigeria towards educating and empowering the girl child. Worthy of note are the decisive initiatives undertaken by Osun State. When the present government under leadership of Ogbeni Rauf Adesoji Aregbesola assumed office on November 27, 2010 the Public education had been so badly managed that only pupils whose parents could not afford education in private schools were left in the public schools. The students, especially in primary schools were badly dressed and mal-nourished. School build-ings were in dilapidated state, students’ performance both at the internal/external examinations was abysmally poor; there were no instructional materials, while the tuition fees in the state-owned tertiary institution was outrageous.


However, the situation has since taken an optimistic tone particularly in line with current focus to prioritise girl child education. There are 622,726 students with 309, 488 females and 313, 238 males, which is a laudable feat as the average expectation for developing nations is that among students not enrolled in school, there are twice as many girls than boys and among illiterate adults there are twice as many women than men.


The governor overhauled education in the state by restructuring the education system into elementary (ages 6-9), middle (ages 10-14) and high school (ages 15-17) structure. He also constructed 100 Elementary, 50 Middle, and 20 High Schools during his first term through the O’School programme. His attention also shifted towards improving the nutrition and health of students in public school as the school feeding programme. O’Meals was introduced in line with the recommendation of the UN.


The government believes that a well-fed pupil is likely to be more attentive in class than his/her counterpart on an empty stomach. Findings reveal that the programme has impacted positively on school enrolment with an increase of 38,000 pupils, representing 25% within four weeks of its introduction. Enrolment of pupils increased from 155,318 on May 31, 2012 to 194,253 by June 30, 2012. By December 2012, government decided to extend the programme to cover pupils in primaries 1-4 (representing the Elementary School) bringing the total number of pupils being fed to 252,000. At inception, the cost of feeding 155, 318 pupils was N7.7m per day, N38.5m per week and or N169.4m per month. With the increase in enrolment to 252,000 pupils, the cost of feeding went up to N14.8m per day, N74m per week, and N325.6m per month.


On the economic front, O’Meals Programme has helped to improve the production capacities of farmer-suppliers of farm produce, and has empowered 3,007 women who were appointed as Food Vendors by the State to serve nutritious meals to pupils on school days. It is noteworthy that the Aregbesola-led administration spends N3billion naira per annum to feed primary 1 – 4 pupils in all the public primary schools in the State of Osun. Out of the 13 original pilot states that started the programme, only the State of Osun is still implementing the School Feeding Programme, in the whole federation.


Another significant feat recorded by Osun State in its quest to promote functional education is the sponsorship of 5 outstanding female school student in an exchange program in the United State in partnership with a non-governmental organisation, AWOW International Girls Leadership Initiative, which empowers and offers life skills training, global exposure and professional mentorship to young women. The 5 girls will attend the annual AWOW Summit & College Tour Leadership Forum for young women, scheduled to hold at the Southern Methodist University, Dallas, Texas, United State, with the theme ‘’ Leading the Future.”


The AWOW Summit aims to help advance the core goal and main objectives towards the attainment of the White House “Let the Girls Learn Initiative”, the Millennium Development Goal and the United Nations’ Gender Equality & Empowerment for all Women & Girls. Apart from the fact that the summit will enable the girls come together to share their experiences, knowledge, and make friends through cultural exchange, the girls would also have opportunity of scholarship for University Education in the USA, after their high school education. Statistics show that when 10% more girls go to school, a country’s GDP increases by 3% on the average and a child born to a literate mother is 50% more likely to survive past the age of 5.


Governor Aregbesola while speaking on state government’s commitment to education development, he said: “This is the continuation of our commitment to standard education. To us, education remains our priority and as a matter of fact, this government has invested hugely on this. “Our belief is that with well-equipped academic teaching and learning environment, coupled with state-of-the-art facilities, the state is on the right path to success. “That is why we are building brighter future for our children knowing that good education prepares nation for good leadership . We are turning around the public schools to bridge the gap between public and private education. “Our education policy has erased the superiority complex between private and public education as sanity has also been restored to public education system.”


The UN explained that girls’ education is both an intrinsic right and a critical lever to reaching other development objectives. Providing girls with an education helps break the cycle of poverty: educated women are less likely to marry early and against their will; less likely to die in childbirth; more likely to have healthy babies; and are more likely to send their children to school. When all children have access to a quality education rooted in human rights and gender equality, it creates a ripple effect of opportunity that influences generations to come. Girls’ education is essential to the achievement of quality learning relevant to the 21st century, including girls’ transition to and performance in secondary school and beyond.


Adolescent girls that attend school delay marriage and childbearing, are less vulnerable to disease including HIV and AIDS, and acquire information and skills that lead to increased earning power. Evidence shows that the return to a year of secondary education for girls correlates to a 25 per cent increase in wages later in life, the UN said.


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Technical Students

The Lagos State Technical and Vocational Education Board (LASTVEB) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Trantouch Ltd to organise a conference for students of the five technical colleges in  state next month.

The Technical Students Empowerment and Entrepreneurship Conference (TECHSEEC) is the brainchild of Mr Collins Uwadia, CEO of Trantouch Ltd, and an alumnus of Government Technical College, Ikotun.

Uwadia said at the signing at the LASTVEB headquarters in GRA, Ikeja, that the conference would expose about 6,000 students of technical colleges to best practices and opportunities in the skills sector by bringing them in contact with seasoned experts, both local and foreign, in a five-star venue.

He also said the students as well as firms in the technical/vocational sector would be able to showcase their creativity through a product exhibition that would feature as part of the event.

During the conference, three lucky students would win slots to get trained in the United Arab Emirates (UAE); and afterwards, about 1,000 final year students of the colleges would also get opportunity for three to six months of training in graphic design, basic computing, business writing, GSM repairs, social media engagement, customer relationship management to be provided by three seasoned ICT firms.

“This initiative was borne out of passion and my experience, having being privileged to work locally and internationally in the technical field,” he said.

Lauding the initiative, Director, Technical and Vocational Education, Mr Laolu Oguntuyi, who signed the MoU as Acting Secretary of LASTVEB, said the board needed private sector partnership to boost the quality of training the students  so that they can be relevant in the work place.

“I am happy about this programme because it will correct the poor perception about Technical and Vocational Education.

“All of us know that there is inadequate linkage between the educational institutions and industry. This training would bridge the gap,” he said.

CEO of Rhoda Michael School of Fashion, Mrs Rhoda Agbeyo, who chaired the organising committee for TECHSEEC, underscored the need for Technical and Vocational Education (TVE) training. She said it was not inferior as evidence of its usefulness was demonstrated in increasing number of graduates seeking training at her fashion school.

“This is what Nigeria needs right now. We have so many graduates in Nigeria without skills. I am a graduate/masters holder who is back to vocational studies. Now I am a teacher of many students at Rhoda Michael School of fashion, who are graduates.


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National Universities Commission

Council of Legal Education (CLE) was established by the Federal Government as a body to administer vocational training to all law graduates from universities accredited by the National Universities Commission (NUC), aspiring to practise as advocates and solicitors of the Supreme Court of Nigeria. The Nigerian Law School (NLS) wholly-owned by the Federal Government is earmarked for that purpose under the management of CLE.


By statute, powers of the Council are delineated to training of law graduates while NUC Act exclusively vests powers of regulations and accreditation of universities programmes in NUC. Categorically, all universities are licensed by the Federal Government; academic programmes are accredited by NUC while professional bodies carry out supervisory roles.


Nevertheless, all work harmoniously towards efficient service-delivery. In Section four of Legal Education (Consolidations etc.) Act, “subject to this Act, the Attorney-General of the Federation may give the Council directions of a general character with regard to the exercise by the Council of its functions and it shall be the duty of the Council to comply with such directions.” Thus, the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice; a representative of the Federal Government oversees operations of the Council. Regrettably, the AGF had in futility issued directives to the Council to grant admission quota to National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN).

In a similar vein, all professional bodies overseeing respective university programmes statutorily queue under the NUC and thus report to the regulatory body. Where non compliance vis-à-vis ethics of any of the professions is detected, the respective professional body could give directions to the university or where deviance is intense, a petition to the NUC and or recommendation for sanctions may follow suit. By this arrangement, professional bodies including the CLE unequivocally lack powers to sanction or reject accreditation-status on universities by the regulatory body, unfortunately, NOUN’s accreditation by the NUC was arbitrarily snubbed by the Council despite clearly demarcated functions.


Splendid, the Federal Government pursuant to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) on education through Open and Distance Learning (ODL) established NOUN, and today, the institution which kicked-off with 10 schools including the faculty of Law has become the largest in the country.


Unfortunately, the CLE glowered on ODL disregarding the fact that the world is now in a digital age especially, the unrestricted admission-policy unlike the conventional universities where admissions are based on nepotism and monetized; and in most cases purchased in huge sums thereby depriving the underprivileged the right to get admissions in disciplines of choice. Apart from that, ODL offers unique opportunities different from the conventional techniques chiefly on flexibility thereby enables citizens get quality education amidst obvious conundrums.


NOUN’s first set graduated with high hopes since 2012 but while awaiting admission quota to the Law School, met a shocker from CLE discrediting their certificates and arbitrarily denied them of entry into the facility wholly-owned by the Federal Government. Meanwhile, CLE is made up of practising lawyers similar to lecturers in NOUN faculty of law. Resplendently, these graduates; mostly matured and engaged in various endeavours ignored the provocations, instead succumbed to allow justice prevail over the intimidations. Basically, the position of CLE cannot be justified on account that practising lawyers from conventional universities lecture and examine NOUN law students with the same books and course-outlines.


Without a doubt, the key factor presented by the Council which centred on standardisation of the noble profession is long overdue, unfortunately, it was narrowed to ODL which is akin to ‘divide and rule’ approach whereby the deteriorating values in the profession so far are from products of the conventional universities. In other words, CLE ought to look lengthily on how to improve the standard of legal profession instead of parochially tagging a particular university’s modes.

The world is changing swiftly and Nigeria cannot be socially quarantined. Interestingly, most stuffs from distance-learning are distinguished in the profession while on the other hand, several law-graduates from the conventional universities are still unable to get rid of the law school studies; hence, it goes beyond designation of universities but a cogent need for broad reforms. Even if degree in law is to be pursued as secondary degree, it should be conceptualized on general applications.


By the Council’s delays in admitting NOUN law graduates, innocent citizens who spent time and resources to complete course-modules comparable to their fellows in the conventional universities have been spitefully hindered from undergoing training for practice and enrollment to the bar knowing that in Nigeria, advocate and solicitor are fused, hence without enrollment to the bar, the basic tool for practice is denied. This is the height of injustice, despotism and perniciousness.


NOUN graduates should as of right be granted admission into the law school while the CLE and other stakeholders work concertedly towards improving on the system. The long years the innocent-victims have wasted at home after graduationis no way justifiable, rather jeopardizes their intellect when eventually cleared from the muddle. NOUN as a newinnovation of the Nigerian government cannot exist without inadequacies; however, remedies shouldn’t be at the detriment of innocent third-parties.


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The late American philosopher, Allan Bloom, once described education as the movement from darkness to light! This statement has proven to be true over the years. Without education, a people are easily brainwashed; they cannot apply critical thinking skills so they easily believe what the few evil-minded ‘smart’ ones want them to believe; they are easily convinced to do evil and because most of them are poverty-stricken, they commit the most atrocious things for a ridiculously small amount of money.


It may not be far from the truth to say that Nigeria is plagued by so many evils today due to her comatose Education sector. It’s high time we all stopped apportioning blames as to who did what to bring Nigeria’s education sector to her knees. Having enumerated the problems to include poor teacher training, low quality education, poor funding, high teacher/students ratio, inadequate schools, curriculum, wrong policies, poor teachers’ remuneration, poor infrastructure etc., this is the time to get to work.


We already know the problems so no need flogging a dead horse. We need workable, practical solutions. Any nation that fails to get it right in this sector is done for. In this report, Vanguard Learning presents the way forward as posited by stakeholders.


EARLY years/Primary level: Early years/Primary education is the foundation so if the foundation is wrong, every other thing will be wrong. As John F. Kennedy, former US president said, ‘a child mis-educated is a child lost,’ so Nigeria is toying with her future. For Nigeria’s Education sector to get back on track, there is absolute need to pay attention to the Early years and primary levels.


At a recent conference organised by Concerned Parents & Educators Network (CPEN) tagged The Gathering, aimed at birthing a new generation of education reformers, Mrs Debola Atoyebi, CEO/Director of Studies, Heritage House Montessori Center, while speaking on The Crucial Early Years (0-6 years), noted that without proper work at the early stage, nothing done at other levels will stand.

“A new born baby has 100 billion brain cells. By age one, a child has developed 50% of adult brain functions; age 3 – 80% and at age 5, it is 90%. It is a very crucial period for a child.


Crucial period

A good early years teacher must have sound knowledge of child development,” she said, adding: “Government has to be more involved in early child education seeing that it is the foundation of every level of education.”


Out-of-school children: Nigeria has the highest number of out-of-school children (over 10.5m) in the world followed by Pakistan (5.4m) and Ethiopia (1.7m).


In a paper entitled The Future of Education in Nigeria – Using Digital Technology Effectively and Wisely, written by Dr. Margee Ensign, President of American University of Nigeria (AUN) and Dr William Bertrand of Tulane University, USA and member, AUN Board, noted that Nigeria has the largest number of out-of-school children as it accounts for almost one out of five out-of-school children worldwide, according to UNESCO Institute for Statistics 2013.


“As UNESCO puts it, ‘Nigeria has some of the worst education indicators globally.’ Its primary net-enrollment ratio fell from 61% in 1999 to 58% in 2010. Equally alarming, the number of out-of-school children increased from 7.4m in 1999 to 10.5m in 2010 (UNESCO Institute for Statistics 2013).”


This could have increased with the Boko Haram insurgency in the North-East. Speaking on the topic, Where we are today – General Overview, at the CPEN conference, Mrs Folasade Adefisayo, Principal Consultant/CEO at Leading Learning Ltd., said the number of out-of-school children in Nigeria is growing everyday due to terrorism. “The North-East alone has over 1.4 billion internally displaced persons, many are children of school age. That should frighten us. We are raising a generation of illiterates.”


Quality education: Teachers can only give what they have. A parent, Mrs Helen Essien while sharing the desires of parents at the CPEN conference stated that teachers have a great influence on children, hence, the need for quality teachers. “Nigeria needs a knowledge-based and knowledge-driven economy and that can only be achieved through quality education.


“Poor quality of education is another issue. 58.3 per cent of children in school are not learning. Many secondary school leavers cannot read. We must get the right teachers and build the system to develop the teachers. A school is as good as the weakest teacher in the school. The children are Nigeria’s treasures and teachers are the nurturers,” said Adefisayo, regretting that the education budget benefits adults and not the children.


Teacher training: Many Nigerian students are taught by untrained or inadequately trained teachers, hence the poor outcome.

“The poor outcomes of the education system are strongly linked to quantitative and qualitative shortcomings in Nigeria’s teacher stock. According to the World Development Indicators Database (World Bank 2012), in 2010, only 66.15% of primary education teachers were properly trained.


The database has no information on the training level of secondary teachers, but we would assume the ratios to be about the same. Other sources (World Bank 2008; Idoko 2010) say 57% and more than 50%, respectively, of basic education teachers are unqualified or under-qualified. Current population “Given these numbers, it seems safe to conclude that as many as one third of the current population of primary and secondary teachers are under-prepared or unprepared for their jobs. This would mean that out of Nigeria’s 574,078 primary and 273,781 secondary education teachers in 2010, only about 550,000 were properly trained while about 300,000 were not.


Given that other estimates classify as many as 50% of the teacher population as untrained, we believe that our estimate of 300,000 primary and secondary teachers needing training is conservative,” said Ensign and Bertrand.

“Primary school teachers are not adequately equipped to train the young minds. When you have a weak mind from primary go into an ill-equipped secondary school, they then struggle into the university and become what I call half-baked,” said Prof. MacDonald Idu of the Dept of Plant Biology and Biotechnology, University of Benin.


Mr. Sola Okuneye, an educationist with over 30 years experience believes that Teacher Training Colleges (TTCs) should be re-introduced for Nigeria to get it right. “We used to have Grades III, II and I teachers but they were phased out and the National Certificate in Education (NCE) was made the lowest qualification to teach in primary schools as part of the National Policy on Education.


Now, if you want me to teach in the primary school, are you training me for that? Most of the NCE teachers cannot cope in primary school because the curriculum is not tailored towards the primary school. NCE holders can only teach in secondary schools.


Childhood education

“Most of the colleges of education have their curriculum not on primary education but on secondary education and that is where the problem is.” “How many people have been trained in early childhood education? Many of the teachers in nursery and primary schools need to go to school. They teach not because of passion or that they are trained for it, they are teaching because there is nobody to do it,” stated Idu.


Remuneration: “Primary school teachers in many developed countries are well paid because they recognise the fact that it is the foundation for any development. You don’t expect good fruits from the top when the root is decayed,” said Idu.


Mrs Yinka Ogunde, CEO of Edumark Consult and founder of CPEN said Finland’s educational model is the best today because they “developed a model built on getting the best of their best to be teachers and pay them very well. You have to be very good to teach in their schools so why won’t the outcome be good?”


Curriculum: According to Prof. Idu, “Our curriculum is too vague and nobody wants to admit that the reason we are having high unemployment is because of our curriculum. We don’t prepare students towards specific industries. So many things are not relevant to the industry in our curriculum. When you leave out the applied aspect of a subject, how do you expect the students to cope at the end of the day?


“The curriculum should be designed to meet national needs,” he said. “We need a working curriculum. What we have now is not workable, it is still way behind and incomplete. When it comes to Early Childhood, we need to restructure the curriculum and be able to adequately train Early Childhood teachers,” said Atoyebi.


Rev. Chris Ugorji, Director/Principal, Federal Science and Technical College, Lagos said that for Nigeria to produce quality graduates from the education sector, proper attention must be paid to technical/vocational education instead of traditional schools with little or no hands-on training.


Government Policies: Dr. Omadeli Boyo, Medical Director at Pinecrest Specialist Hospitals, Lagos says policy somersaults by government have been an issue in Nigeria’s education sector. “I don’t know if the 6-3-3-4 system of education introduced some years ago, is being followed to the letter.” He believes that the constant change in government policies is adversely affecting outcome.


Functional education: “Our educational system must be functional. We now have graduates that cannot write job applications,” said Prof. Abdu Sajo, Dean, School of Agriculture, Modibbo Adama University of Technology, Yola.

Boyo, an employer of labour said there is a need for government to overhaul the Education system. “Most of our secondary school leavers cannot write; they cannot spell; they are poor in literary and numeracy skills.”


Corroborating this assertion, Dr. Ensign said that many of the children who make it into school do not receive a good basic education. “According to UNESCO, in 2008, 28% of young men aged 15-29 who had left school after six years of schooling were illiterate, and a further 39% were semi-literate. Among young women, these figures were 32% and 52%, respectively.”


Funding: “Funding is important but it is not all about money, it is more about ideas, vision, planning, strategy and implementation. We can spend billions of naira in education without achieving results,” said Ogunde. Speaking on the budget of the sector between 2011 and 2016, Mr Omole Ibukun, Secretary, Education Rights Campaign (ERC), OAU, Ile-Ife said: “From N306.3bn in 2011, to N400.15bn in 2012, to N426.53bn in 2013, to N493bn in 2014, to 492bn in 2015, to N369bn in 2016, Nigeria’s most important sector remains underfunded.


While this budget is for the federal level alone, it is still less than adequate for the essential development needed in this sector. With over 10m out-of-school children, Nigeria needs to expend this fund on 40 federal universities, 21 federal polytechnics, 22 federal colleges of education and 104 unity colleges.” Sajo says government needs to abide by UNESCO’s provision that 26 per cent of a country’s budget must be given to education.”


Shortage of teachers: “The overwhelming need for recruiting, training and retraining is confronted with the current supply issue of around 68,000 new trained teachers a year (National Bureau of Statistics 2013).


Thus, to resolve the current problem would take almost 20 years by which time the population of young Nigerians would have doubled requiring yet another doubling of teaching resources. In short, the current structure and system cannot solve the problem. Drastic action is needed if Nigeria is going to just cover its current need,” said Ensign.


Mr. Amed Demirhan, GM/Director at Barzani National Memorial in Kurdistan, believes that the solution lies in the use of information and communications technology. Citing a recent study comparing faculty pay in 28 countries by Center for International Higher Education, at Boston College, and Laboratory for Institutional Analysis at the National Research University Higher School of Economics, in Moscow, he said Nigeria ranked above 15 of the 28 countries including Russia, China, Mexico, Japan and Brazil.


“This is good, so if Nigeria starts implementing serious ICT with video/audio media teaching in real-time, she can recruit faculty from around the world especially those countries where the faculty salary is lower than Nigeria’s. It will be easier to find more qualified people and a larger pool for selection. It costs a lot to bring people from other countries but if you can hire people and they don’t have to come here, it will be cheaper. By deploying ICT, Nigeria can widen education opportunities, making it more affordable.”


Leveraging on Technology

In order to meet the need for adequate teachers in the system, stakeholders say Nigeria needs to leverage on technology. Dr. Ensign said that as Nigeria’s population is projected to be the third largest in the world by 2025, the best solution is to deploy technology as Nigeria may not have enough time or resources to build more schools to meet the need. “ Nigeria needs a revolutionary new approach to education in order to tackle the challenges posed by demographic dynamics and an outdated, over-strained schooling system. Digital technologies can provide what it takes to set the nation’s youth on the right path to collectively unfold Nigeria’s full potentials, and to lead them to the point of complete world participation,” noted Ensign and Bertrand.


Amed says that if institutions can get the libraries right (building e-libraries for instance), education would become more accessible and affordable to a larger number of people.

Higher education: “Nigeria faces an equally stark challenge in higher education. The same demographic bomb that is driving disaster in primary and secondary education is marching forward here as well. Already, the capacity of Nigeria’s higher education system is insufficient: each year from 2002 to 2007, only between 5.2% and 14.7% of university applicants could be admitted for want of seats (National Bureau of Statistics 2013; Olakulehin 2008).


Read more at:

  • JAMB has cancelled the use of scratch cards for any transaction
  • The board described the use of cards as archaic and old-fashioned
  • The decision is also as a result of fraudulent practices associated with scratch cards




Professor Ishaq Oloyede, the registrar of the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB), has revealed that they have scrapped the use of scratch cards for any transactions and services. The reason given for the scrapping was that it was archaic and subject to fraud.


On another note, the registrar, also demanded that the federal government should revert to the former system where serving vice chancellors of universities were made chairmen of the governing board of JAMB.


Dr Fabian Benjamin the spokesperson for JAMB, said, the decision to scrap the use of scratch cards was announced by the registrar in Abuja in a paper he delivered during a meeting of the association of vice chancellors of Nigerian universities. In lieu of the scratch cards, the platform of pin vending will be used, in order to check all forms of fraudulent practices which was prevalent with the use of scratch cards.


“The decision is as a result of its consistent subjection to fraudulent practices, the use of scratch cards is archaic and it is the drive by JAMB to also promote accountability in line with government’s zero tolerance for corruption. “This new system will be accessible through the options of web payment, ATM issued cards (Visa, verve and Mastercard), online quick teller, ATM payment, quick teller mobile application and Bank Branch case/card,” he said.


Speaking about the practice of using university vice chancellors as the chairmen of the governing board of JAMB, Oloyede appealed to the government that since the agency is a creation of the committee of vice chancellors, it would only be proper for them to be clearly recognised as active stakeholders to avoid any acrimony between tertiary institutions and JAMB.


He said he believed that this would “engender good synergies and harmonious relationship with a view to effectively delivering on its mandates.” He concluded saying: “This practice which promoted harmony and quality inputs on the Board’s matriculation activities have since been forgotten or neglected.


“The appointment of the chairman of the Board could be restricted to only heads of tertiary institutions in Nigeria perhaps in rotational basis among the vice chancellors of universities, rectors of polytechnics, monotechnics and provosts of colleges of education.”


Meanwhile, the Nigerian Senate on Thursday, October 13, extended the validity period of the JAMB Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) to three years against the present one year.


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