The Commissioners of Education in the 19 Northern States, say they may reopen schools before October 30, but subject to approval of their respective state governors.
The commissioners made this known in a communique issued in Kaduna on Sunday, at the end of a two-day meeting on student exchange programme, school reopening and other matters held in Abuja.
The communique was signed by Dr Shehu Makarfi, Commissioner of Education, Kaduna State, who is also the Chairman of the northern states School Exchange Programme (SEP).
The meeting was attended by commissioners of 10 of the 19 northern states namely, Kaduna, Bauchi, Yobe, Plateau, Niger, Kogi Gombe, Taraba, Nassarawa and Plateau, while others sent their apologies.
“We have agreed to reopen schools as soon as possible, hopefully before Oct. 30, fully or in phases, but subject to the approval of our respective governors.
“Some states have already reopened fully while others opened partially since Sept. 14, so we are looking at the possibilities of reopening as soon as we get approvals.
“We therefore urge state governments, development partners, parents and relevant stakeholders to combine efforts in the provision of COVID-19 prevention facilities in schools to fast track reopening.
“The Federal Government should equally support states to meet the COVID-19 requirements for school reopening, as it did to other sectors,” they said.
They recommended the establishment of an effective communication channel between the FME and the state commissioners of education, on policy issues, development in the sector, and particularly plans on schools reopening.
The commissioners observed that most of the SEP schools were overpopulated and directed that affected states should adhere to the numbers stipulated in the guidelines establishing the programme.
According to them, decongesting the schools will ensure quality teaching and learning.
“Commissioners should intensify monitoring of SEP and other schools to improve the education delivery system in their respective states.
“States should equally invest in building the administrative capacities of principals and teachers by organising workshops and supporting school administrators and teachers to attend courses in institutes of education and public administration.
“Similarly, Information and Communication Technology should also be included in school administration to equip school principals and teachers with relevant skills to deliver quality education,” they stated.
The commissioners also resolved to engage the Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC) in developing the needed strategies for integrating children of all almajiri schools into the formal education system.
They agreed to intensify efforts to gain the support and cooperation of all stakeholders to ensure success of the integration process.
Edited By: Chioma Ugboma/Felix Ajide
The Ekiti Government says it has trained no fewer than two thousands public school administrators on COVID-19 protocols, ahead of full resumption of schools in the state.
The state’s Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology, Dr Adebimpe Aderiye, made this known on Wednesday in Ado-Ekiti.
Aderiye spoke at a two-day training programme organised for head teachers, assistant head teachers and selected teachers of public primary and junior secondary schools in the state.
He, however, said that a task force set up by the government to enforce the COVID-19 protocol would swing into action immediately schools resume on Sept. 21.
The commissioner, represented by Permanent Secretary in the Ministry, Mr James Owolabi, said severe sanctions await any head teacher whose school was found violating the COVID-19 prevention measures.
She said that Gov. Kayode Fayemi-led administration would continue to take proactive steps to curtail the spread of the deadly disease in the state.
Aderiye, therefore, urged the participants to pay attention to the resource persons, expected to expose them to precautionary measures specifically designed to curb the spread of COVID-19 in schools.
Akinwumi said the motive was part of the proactive steps to create and maintain a safe environment without compromising the wellbeing of pupils, teachers and parents after the lockdown.
He commended the governor for fumigation of all public schools, provision of Infrared Thermometers, disinfectants, handwashing soaps and alcohol based sanitisers, among others.
Edited By: Folasade Adeniran/Olagoke Olatoye
The Oyo State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB) has trained 2, 454 head teachers to build capacity at primary school level ahead of the reopening of schools, the Chairman of the board, Dr Nureni Adeniran has said.
A statement issued on Friday in Ibadan by Mr Michael Ogunsina a media officer of the board quotes Adeniran as saying the capacity training organised was to complement Oyo State Government’s efforts in containing the spread of COVID-19 pandemic.
“This was in view of the World Health Organisation’s submission that COVID-19 might be with us for a while.
“The board in collaboration with Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC) has begun capacity building of all teachers at Primary school level as directed by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC).
”The State Government had earlier organised and funded training of school administrators on COVID-19 preventive measures for both primary and secondary school teachers.
”The government’s zeal was to prepare head teachers for a safe and hitch-free re-opening of schools and provision of learning facilities while it takes into consideration the health, safety, environmental protection and security of learners, teachers, education personnel and families.
“I urged facilitators at the training to follow stipulated measures, actions and recommendations put in place by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control and Oyo State Emergency Operation Centre,” he said.
Adeniran thanked UBEC for its collaborations and support to the state government.
He said that the six major topics in the training, facilitated by Oyo State Emergency Operation Centre, focused on managing schools and ensuring safety in the post-COVID lockdown, the concept and practice of social distancing and its implications.
Adeniran said that others were promoting personal, environmental hygiene and cough etiquette as safeguard against COVID-19 and other respiratory diseases as well as the use of face-mask.
“The training also dealt with the psychological effects of pandemic and lockdown on learners and how to help them to overcome the trauma and adjust to the realities of the disease.
“And also, identifying and responding to learners showing signs of illness,” he said.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports said that the training session which was held across all educational zones in the state, was from Sept. 8 to Sept. 10.
It reports that the training was attended by representatives of UBEC, Nigeria Union of Teachers and Association of Primary School Head teachers of Nigeria.
Edited By: Chidinma Agu/Bayo Sekoni
Dr Ossom Ossom, Public Relations Officer of the commission, confirmed this to News Agency of Nigeria on Monday in Abuja, following skepticism about the authenticity of the recruitment.
A document obtained by NAN from the UBEC Headquarters in Abuja, confirming the recruitment, noted that applications were currently being invited from eligible candidates for the 2020 and 2021 service periods.
The document stated that the FTS, a two-year intervention programme established by the Federal Government in 2006, was aimed at assisting states in addressing teacher shortage at the basic education level.
Part of the requirements for application are, Bachelor’s degree in Education or Bachelor’s degree with Postgraduate Diploma in Education (PGDE),
The qualification, according to the document, should not be lower than a Second Class (Lower Division) and not earned earlier than 2014.
The document further stated that applicants were also expected to have completed or been exempted from the National Youth Service Scheme (NYSC).
It said applicants with Nigeria Certificate in Education (NCE), with credit passes in Teaching Practice and the Teaching Subjects, also not earned earlier than 2014, were equally eligible.
The document noted that they were, however, expected to have specialisation in any of the following subjects: English Language, Mathematics, Integrated Science, Biology, Chemistry and Physics.
Other subjects are: Agricultural Science, Home Economics, Computer Science, Technical/Technology Education, Computer Science or Information Technology, Nigerian Languages, Physical and Health Education.
It said applicants were expected not to be more than 35 years of age and not currently employed or enrolled under the NYSC, N-Power or any other similar programme.
On the method of application, the document stated that applicants were expected to complete the application forms online, by visiting https://fts.admissions.clouds
”Applicants are also required to upload their credentials with their most recent passport photographs.
”The application portal would be opened for two weeks, from Sept. 10 to Sept. 24, with no extension.
Meanwhile, shortlisted candidates would be required to sit for the Computer-Based Test (CBT) on Oct. 10, at designated centres in every state capital.
Edited By: Chinyere Nwachukwu/Felix Ajide
The Kwara Executive Cabinet has granted approval for the government to seek a N7.1billion loan facility from a bank as counterpart fund to access over N14 billion outstanding Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC) funds.
A statement issued in Ilorin on Saturday by the Commissioner for Communication, Mrs Harriet Afolabi-Osatimehin quoted the Commissioner for Finance and Planning, Mrs Florence Oyeyemi as saying this during the cabinet meeting on Friday.
According to Oyeyemi, the money will serve as 50 per cent matching grant for the UBEC counterpart funds.
This, she said, would bridge the yawning gap in basic education sector including strengthening infrastructure, training and equipping teachers with modern teaching skills.
The commissioner for finance and planning added that the fund would be spent to provide instruction materials and purchasing vehicles to aid performance of monitoring and quality assurance activities across the state.
Oyeyemi said that Kwara currently had Nigeria’s highest outstanding UBEC funds, following the commission blacklisting the state previously for diverting what it accessed in 2013.
The commissioner said Kwara exited the pariah status last year after the new administration paid back the N450 million that was diverted, although it still had an outstanding N7.1 billion with the UBEC.
Oyeyemi said the bank facility would be accessed and drawn in installment to provide the counterpart funds to be invested in the basic education sector
“Added to the N7.1 billion matching grants from UBEC, Kwara will be committing at least N14, 301, 843, 568.18 to revitalise the basic education sector across the state,” Oyeyemi said.
She told the cabinet that the facility became necessary in the face of dwindling resources to subnational governments across the country and the overarching need in Kwara to invest in basic education for a brighter future.
Oyeyemi said that the cabinet’s decision would be conveyed to the House of Assembly for their approval and inclusion of same in a supplementary budget, which the government may pass to deepen investments across productive sectors of the economy.
Edited By: Chioma Ugboma/Bayo Sekoni
Gov. Samuel Ortom on Friday in Zaki-Biam, commissioned the 47.7 km Zaki-Biam-Afia/Gbeji road estimated at N3.8b in Ukum Local Government Area of the state.
News Agency of Nigeria reports that Ortom was on an inspection tour of projects undertaken by his administration, cited within the Sankera axis of Benue North East Senatorial District of the state.
He had earlier inaugurated the renovated Central Primary School and Mbaton -Amaafu electricity projects cited in Katsina-Ala Local Government Area.
Performing the two ceremonies in Katsina-Ala local government area and Zaki Ibiam in Ukum and local government area, Ortom disclosed that there were “numerous projects scattered across the State awaiting to be commissioned”.
He said he would commission all the projects in the coming days, adding that the school projects were executed with counterpart funds from the Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC).
On the the Zaki/-Ibiam -Afia/ Gbeji road, the governor said the project would boost the socio-economic wellbeing of the entire people of Ukum, Logo and Katsina-Ala local government areas.
He commended the senator, representing Benue North East, Gabriel Suswam, for initiating the road project in 2008, when he was governor of the state.
Recounting his achievements, Ortom said his administration had already built and renovated over 1000 blocks of classrooms, procured over 70,000 desks and chairs for primary school pupils.
He disclosed that the state had another N4 billion ready for the execution of more school projects in the State.
“For me I felt that there was no need wasting money for the commissioning of projects but since I have been accused of not executing any projects, I have decided to go round the state and commission them. I have many completed projects.
“Our aim is for the primary schools, which is the basic foundation for learning, should be the strongest sector in the education sector.”
Ortom said that his administration had approved another round of amnesty to the youths in Ukum, Logo and Katsina-Ala local government areas.
He, however, warned that those who might refuse to submit their arms this time would face dire consequences.
“I have accepted your appeal for a second round of amnesty Programme for the youths in this area. So let them bring out their weapons and submit, else, I will come after them with full force.
“The Sankera people have suffered so much. Nothing is going on here especially in the villages. I want to assure you that nothing will happen to those that submit their arms by the grace of God”.
Earlier, Sen. Suswam commended Ortom over his achievements in education, stressing that he was creating a conducive atmosphere for the educational sector in spite of lean resources.
“I have been through this and I know what it means to embark on projects of this nature at this time. In spite of distractions, the governor is forging ahead. I will stand with him till the end of his tenure because he is doing what is right,” the former governor said.
The Commissioner for Works, Transport and Energy, Alexander Shapera, said the road contract, which was awarded in 2008 was at some point abandoned before Ortom completed it.
Also speaking, the Commissioner for Education, Prof Dennis Ityavyar, said Ortom had spent over N20 billion in the primary school sector alone since assumption of office.
The Chairman, State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB, Mr Joseph Utse, said Benue Government had approved the construction of 1000 block of classrooms, renovation of 99 blocks and the procurement of 42, 350 plastic desk and chairs for 2020.
Edited By: Philip Dzeremo and Abdullahi Yusuf (NAN)
Niger State Universal Basic Education Board (NSUBEB), has began the training of Education Managers who are expected to replicate the training to 3,219 Head Teachers of Primary Schools in the state.
The move is in preparation for the reopening of schools across the 25 Local Government Areas ( LGA) in the state.
Dr Isah Adamu, the state Chairman of the board disclosed this at a conference organised by NSUBEB in Minna on Thursday.
“The board has began the training of experts in Education Management and Administration in preparation for the resumption and examination of primary six pupils, taking into cognisance the COVID -19 protocols.
“We are training 25 Education Managers on Non Pharmaceutical Protocols to enable them step down the training to various primary schools across the 25 LGAs of the state,” he said.
He explained that the objective of the training was to inform the participants on measures to be taken for the safe reopening of schools.
“We must understand how to safe guard ourselves , teachers and pupils from being infected with COVID- 19 and to know the requirements needed for the safe reopening of schools.
“After the training, Niger state government will fix a date for resumption as we are expecting 500 government sponsored pupils to write the common entrance examinations.
“The pupils we are expecting to take the entrance examination will be provided with all necessary requirements, including face masks, face Sheild, soaps, saniterzer, running water buckets and Infrared Thermometers.
“We are going to spend about N10 million on COVID -19 requirements for the 500 pupils that will be taking the examination,” he said
Also speaking, Malam Salihu Gonna, the Director, Teacher Professional Development (NSUBEB), said that radio and television jingles aimed at sensitising and creating awareness on the pandemic had been ongoing in the state.
He said that with the recent intervention from the Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC), the awareness jingle tagged ” Lesson On Air” had been rekindled.
According to Gonna, the training will help to address disillusion some communities and parents have about COVID – 19.
“This training will help the Headmasters on how to convince their communities to accept the fact that COVID – 19 is real, it is only when they accept that they can be enlightened on how to prevent it,” he said.
Edited By: Saidu Adamu/Ese E. Ekama (NAN)
Ahead of reopening of schools on Sept. 21, Kebbi Government on Wednesday flagged off the distribution of COVID-19 protection items to over 2,000 public schools in the state.
Alhaji Muhammadu Magawata-Aliero, Commissioner for Basic and Secondary Education who flagged off the distribution in Birnin Kebbi, said the items will be distributed to 1, 901 primary schools and 107 Junior Secondary Schools.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the items being distributed included sanitisers, liquid soap, face masks and hand washing facilities.
The commissioner said the gesture was meant to ensure that children and their teachers were protected from the dreaded virus.
Magawata-Aliero appreciated the Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC) which facilitated the procurement of the materials.
He charged the beneficiaries to ensure effective and proper utilisation of the materials, adding that it was key to continuous protection from the disease.
The commissioner appreciated the state governor, education secretaries and teachers for their dedication and commitment to the education sector.
“I want to reecho that you cannot find any better place in Kebbi State where people are serious with their work than education, specifically teachers,” he added.
The commissioner explained that the government was proposing to reopen schools by September 21, as earlier agreed by all commissioners of education in the country.
The Acting Executive Secretary, State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB), Hajiya Fatima Udulu said the distribution of the materials was to mitigate the spread of coronavirus among students and teachers.
“It is in line with this, that the Kebbi SUBEB in collaboration with UBEC, Abuja procured hand sanitisers, liquid soap, face masks and hand washing facilities to be distributed to schools across the state.
“This is in attempt to ensure that COVID-19 protocols such as physical distancing, wearing of face masks, regular washing of hands with soap or sanitisers are observed in all our schools,” she said.
“Everything must be put in place to ensure that we are protected and the young ones are also protected, because they are the future of the country.
“We cannot continue to keep our schools closed. As we witness gradual relaxing of the lockdown, eventually, we have to learn to live with COVID-19 because nobody is certain of the time it will be over,” he added.
Edited By: Maharazu Ahmed (NAN)
The Nasarawa State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB), has promised to partner with the Sports Writers Association of Nigeria (SWAN) to development sports in Primary and Junior Secondary Schools.
Dan’Azumi, represented by Ibrahim Eshi, Director Academic Services at the board, said the partnership had become imperative to discover and promote the talents and potential of pupils and students.
The SUBEB boss in the state said that the board had already set up machinery toward organising sporting competitions in primary and Junior Secondary Schools to catch young talents.
“We would embark on massive training of games teachers in all public schools in the state covered by our mandate in preparatory to the competition.
“We would also train the students so that they can as well pursue carrier in sports as it is one of the lucrative area that the youth need to explore,” he said.
According to him, the board is still awaiting further supply from UBEC to enable them distribute to the remaining schools.
The chairman promised to involve SWAN in all the sporting activities of the board and support them where necessary.
Earlier, Isa Mohammed, SWAN Chairman in the state said the visit was aimed at introducing the officials of the association with a view to partnering with the board to promote sports at the grassroots.
The SWAN chairman, however, listed some of the challenges confronting the association to include, office accommodation chairs and tables among others and appealed to the board to assist the association. .
Edited By: Gregg Mmaduakolam/Ese E. Ekama (NAN)
Dan’Azumi represented by Ibrahim Eshi, Director Academic Services at the board, said the partnership became imperative to discover and promote the talents and potential of pupils and students of school age.
The SUBEB boss in the state said that the board had already set up machinery toward organising sporting competitions in primary and Junior Secondary Schools to catch the talents young.
“We would embark on massive training of games teachers in all public schools in the state covered by our mandate preparatory to the competition ahead.
“We would also train the students so that they can as well pursue carriers in sports as one lucrative area that the youth need to explore,” he said.
The SUBEB Chairman further disclosed that the board had recently distributed sporting equipment purchased by the Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC), to over 100 primary and Junior Secondary schools.
He added that the board was still awaiting further supply from UBEC to enable it to distribute to the remaining schools.
The Chairman, therefore, promised to involve SWAN in all the sporting activities of the board and support it where necessary.
Earlier, Isa Mohammed, SWAN Chairman in the state said the visit was aimed at introducing the officials of the association with the view of partnering the board to promote sports at the grassroots.
The SWAN Chairman, however, listed some of the challenges confronting the association to include office accommodation, chairs and tables among others and appealed to the board for assistance.
Edited By: Gregg Mmaduakolam/Donald Ugwu (NAN)