9th January, 2020
Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, on Thursday, made a surprise appearance at CMS Schools Complex in Bariga for an assessment of the on-going capacity building programme for all public primary school teachers across the State.
More than 2,000 teachers from all the 57 local councils are currently undergoing a two-week intensive training being held under the State Government’s Eko Excel Initiative. The programme is a key component of the Sanwo-Olu administration’s education blueprint seeking to deploy technology to fundamentally transform the basic education template, thereby improving the outcome of teaching and learning.
The State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB) and its technical partner, Bridge International Academies, had already trained 2,400 primary school teachers in the first tranche of the capacity building programme.
Sanwo-Olu said the training was necessary to incorporate the primary school teachers into the reforms being introduced to improve on education at the foundation level and enhance the quality of education in the State.
The Governor said his government had concluded the plans to digitise curriculum of basic schools, noting modern techniques were being employed to maximise learning in all public-owned primary schools. He said the teachers required the training to enable them use gadgets being introduced by the Government to achieve and measure academic growth in primary schools.
He said: “We are changing the mode of instruction in our primary school and we are employing technology to achieve this. By this, we are creating a situation where school will be attractive to children, irrespective of social background. We believe the first effort to shape their future is to make them look forward to going to school every day in their formative years. When we properly prepare them at that cognitive stage, we have carved a good future for them.
“Delivering these instructions is critical. This is why we introduced this intensive training to boost the capacity of our teachers to deliver and support these children at this critical stage. We believe teachers are the first point of contact between the children and their future. The six hours spent with teachers can go a long way in shaping what the pupils will become tomorrow.”
Apart from the training, Sanwo-Olu said the government would also be supporting the teachers with attractive welfare package that would boost their morale and enhance productivity.
To better motivate the teachers and get them committed to their duty, the governor disclosed that his administration would be introducing a vehicle scheme for head teachers to support them in delivering their responsibilities.
“They used to say that teacher’s reward is in heaven. In Lagos State, all diligent teachers will get their rewards while they are alive. As a form of reward for your efforts, we are going to give head teachers official vehicles. We expect this will get you more committed to discharge your duty,” he said.
Sanwo-Olu, who observed some of the training sessions, said the teachers were expected to develop on emotional intelligence after the training, which would help them focus on how best to prepare pupils in their care for learning, each day.
The teachers were also being trained on how to use a purpose-built Android tablet, which, the Governor said, was introduced to make it easy for the State to track growth and predict pupils’ performance on weekly basis.
Through the gadget, Sanwo-Olu said the State would be adopting a single curriculum across schools and checking absenteeism among teachers and pupils.
He said: “The use of teacher computer will enable us to know what each teacher is teaching on daily and weekly basis. This shows that we can measure academic growth and we can predict the outcome, because all pupils are being taken through same instructions at the same time. We are expecting outcome that will propel us to another level. These are part of the progress we are going to achieve with the use of the tech gadgets as a medium to pass instructions in our basic schools.”
The unscheduled visit, however, turned to a moment of appreciation for the visibly elated teachers, who suspended the training sessions to show their gratitude to the Governor for the opportunity. The training, it was gathered, is the first in about two decades in which primary school teachers are being taken through an intensive training programme aimed at strengthening their capacity to discharge their tasks.
Accompanying the Governor on the visit include the Commissioner for Education, Mrs. Folashade Adefisayo, Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Gbenga Omotoso, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Education, Mrs. Abosede Adelaja, and SUBEB Chairman, Hon. Wahab Alawiye-King.