The Supervising Minister of Education, Chief (Barr.) Ezenwo Nyesom Wike, has said that the next batch of In-Service Training programme for teachers at the basic level of the educational system would soon commerce.
The Minister, who disclosed this during a meeting with Commissioners of Education from across the federation on Monday, 25 November 2013 in Abuja, also said that the Universal Basic Education Commission, UBEC, has been directed to put in place necessary arrangements for the conduct of school census with a view to ascertain the number of children enrol in school across the country.
Reiteration Federal Government’s commitment to the delivery of qualitative education at the basic level of the educational system, the Minister said that the Federal Government intervention is to assist the States, adding that as the deadline to meet the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) draws closer there is need to foster closer collaboration between all levels of government to address identified challenges.
Speaking further the Minister said that in order to address the issue of out-of-school children, the Federal Government embarked on the construction of Almajiri Model schools in the north, as well as model schools in the South-South and South-East to address Boys-drop-out. However, the Minister expressed worry over the inability of many states, particularly in the South-South and South-East, to provide the land for the building of the schools even when they have been duly informed over six months ago.
Also the Minister stressed the need for the commissioner and Chairman of SUBEB in the respective States to work in harmony, saying that even though SUBEBs are in charge of basic education, the commissioners must be carried along. This is even as he urged the Commissioners to make concerted efforts towards accessing UBEC intervention fund, which he said, would go a long way to solve some identified problems hindering the delivery of qualitative basic education in the country.
Speaking earlier, Chairman, Commissioners of Education Forum, Prof. Offiong O. Offiong, expressed appreciation for the meeting, saying that they always look forward to such meeting as a way of identifying with the Federal Government , and way to further advance the course of education in the country.
He pledged the forum’s unalloyed support with the Minister, saying that they will continue to collaborate by ensuring that education in the respective states on a sound track, noting that it is by so doing that education in the country can be said to be moving forward.
The Chairman said that the issues of out-of -school children and UNIDO intervention in technical and vocational education are some areas they would want clarification and guidance during the course of the meeting.