Stakeholders seek overhaul of basic learning for sector’s growth
Concerned about the downturn in the quality of basic education in the country, a United Kingdom based non-governmental organisation, “Raising Champion Children Initiative (RCCI), recently engaged stakeholders in the sector at a roundtable conference with a view to finding solutions to the multiple problems confronting the sector. Executive Director of the organisation, Mrs. Bose Agbesanwa said the move became imperative in order to lay the right foundation for our children and also meet up with international standard, especially now that the world has gone global.
The roundtable dialogue was put together by RCCI in conjunction with Women Consortium of Nigeria (WOCON) and Out- of -School Children Empowerment Foundation (OSCEF). Held at the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry building (LCCI), Alausa, Ikeja, the conference brought together stakeholders in the basic education sub-sector.
Mrs. Agbesanwa, who spoke on the topic, “Grading Nigeria’s progress in basic education,”lamented the state of primary education in the country and warned that until we commit to setting things right and laying a good foundation in this area, there is no way we can progress.”
“The purpose of the dialogue is to identify the problems that led us to where we are at the moment as far as primary education is concerned and to discuss how the quality of education can be improved in Nigeria”, she said.She explained that the group is committed to supporting and improving lives of less privileged children, their families and communities by empowering them through quality relevant education, innovative healthcare and entrepreneurial skills.”
Agbesanwa assured that RCCI would work with government and the private sector to raise the standard of teaching and learning in public schools.
“The initiative will train teachers to provide high quality education targeted at developing the potentials and talents of learners, improving the learning environment by providing basic amenities and empowering families to become employable and independent earners.”
Keynote speaker, Mrs. Shade Adefisayo, stressed the need to raise children for a functional future, pointing out that “Education is the strategic tool to empower our children for that kind of future.”Represented by Mr. Johnson Abbaly, the renowned education expert who spoke on the topic, “Basic education in Nigeria: Where we are at the moment”, identified 10 thematic pillars that must be given utmost attention in order to nurture our children for a viable future.
These include access/Equity; enrollment and transition, learning outcomes and transition; teacher capacity and quality; infrastructure adequacy and technology in education.Others are health, well-being and quality of care; societal support environment; funding adequacy as well as school security and safety.”
Participants at the roundtable dialogue also identified some of the thorny issues that have contributed to the deplorable state of our basic education in Nigeria.According to Bakare Amos, “Parents today believe it is the responsibility of teachers to train their children. Meanwhile our teachers have also lost it, as many of them are products of necessity because they are not trained as professional teachers.”
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