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Cross River govt receives best literacy champions’ award

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The Universal Learning Solution (ULS), Jolly Phonics Training Partners to Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC) has presented Cross River Government with “Literacy Champion Award’’ 2019.

Speaking during the award ceremony on Wednesday in Calabar, Project Director of ULS, Ms Louise Gittins, said the award was in recognition of the state government’s commitment to the jolly phonics project.

According to her, through the support of the government, the pupils in public primary schools now learn how to read and write with confidence.

She also disclosed that Cross River emerged as the best performing Jolly Phonics State in Nigeria in the 2019 phonics screening exercise recently organised by Universal Learning Solutions (ULS).

She noted that, out of 56,000 primary one to primary three pupils assessed across the country, the state pupils emerged the best in literacy assessment.

“We did a jolly phonics screening exercise across all states in the country; schools were chosen randomly and we did not choose the best schools.

“We assessed 56,000 pupils in primary one to three across the country. We wanted to look at the results of pupils in primary three just to see if they were able to read.

“When we broke the results down to states, I was so excited to see Cross River at the top, a vast majority of primary three pupils in Cross River are now reading words, ‘’ Gittins said.

She added that Cross River also emerged overall best in primary two categories.

Speaking on the assessment applications, Gittins stated that the new technological system would be used in monitoring schools; assessing pupils; observing teachers and providing feedback for teachers mentoring and guidance.

She maintained that the innovation will enable decision makers and stakeholders pinpoint specific areas for support.

Gittins urged State Universal Basic Education Boards (SUBEB) across the country to partner with ULS to enhance literacy in public schools through the Jolly monitor app.

She expressed gratitude to the board and the state government for their support toward the success of Jolly Phonics project.

She commended the Executive Chairman of SUBEB, Dr Stephen Odey, for building upon the existing projects as well as enhancing it to make it even better.

She said that under the 2016 Teachers professional development funds, Cross River gave the highest contribution toward jolly phonics.

“That highlights how much support you have given to the project and indeed the passion you have for pupils’ development.

“I want to say thank you to you and the Governor for enhancing us improve the literacy standard in the State, ‘’ Gittins said.

Responding, Odey expressed his excitement over the strides the state had attained in the Jolly phonics project and commended ULS for enhancing the literacy level of the state through new innovations and initiatives.

He assured of the board and state government’s commitment to continue to partner ULS to ensure that Cross River remained a leading State.

Universal Learning Solution (ULS) is an International UBEC approved Training Provider that specialises in Jolly Phonics. Jolly phonics is a major international top selling English literacy tool.

Jolly phonics in Nigeria started in 2011 with a pilot study in Cross River.

Through the project the ULS has been able to train 80,459 teachers across Nigeria, with Cross River leading the way with 6,620 trained teachers.

Edited by Donald Ugwu

Education

NYSC set aside N26m to replace Corps member’s amputated limbs

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The National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) has set aside N26 million to replace a Corps member’s amputated limbs in Kano state.

The state NYSC Coordinator, Malam Ladan Baba disclosed this to newsmen on Wednesday when he led other officials of the scheme to visit the corps member, Nuruddeen Tahir at his family house in Gwarzo Local Government Area of the state.

Baba sai the corps member, who already had his left hand amputated when he was 12 years old, had also lost the other one in an accident on his way to his Place of Primary Assignment (PPA) in Taraba State where he attended orientation course for 2019 Batch ‘B’, Stream l.

He said, “The DG, when he heard the information was so concerned about the condition of the Corps member, therefore, he made adequate arrangements to replace the two hands with artificial ones.

The coordinator explained that the courage and endurance of the 27 year old corps member to continue with his education after the amputation of the first hand prompted the DG to offer him the lifetime succor.

He said, “Tahir is presently stable after spending over two months on admission at Dala Orthopaedic Hospital in Kano, and the NYSC had settled all his medical bills and had since been posted to teach in a secondary school in his hometown.

“After he managed to complete his primary education, he had the zeal and determination to continue with his education up to degree level where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Islamic Studies from Yusuf Maitama-Sule University, Kano”.

“In order to give this patriotic young man hope of life, the DG made adequate arrangements to replace the two limbs with artificial ones worth N26 million in order to give him relief and succor,” the coordinator added”.

He said that the replacement process is ongoing as the doctors had made steady progress for completion of the implanting of the limbs.

In his remarks, the doctor who would administer the implant, Dr Rufus Arumugam, said they had already placed the order for the artificial limbs in Scotland, adding that they would be delivered in 45 days from now.

He explained that the customised prosthetic limbs, which would be built using bionic technology, would enable the patient to move his hands normal.

According to him, the limbs would come with a remote control which would be used to move the hands based on the action the patient wants to perform.

Also speaking to newsmen, the father of the corps member, Alhaji Dahiru Dalhatu expressed happiness and gratitude for the gesture.

He said that, “Tahir was grinding grains when he was 12 years, the grinding machine grabbed up his cloth and severely injured him which eventually led to the amputation of his left limb at Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital.

My son is not lazy and wants to continue with his life struggles even with the loss of his limbs.”

But now with this gesture by the NYSC, my son will be able to continue to run his normal life. I thank the Director General. I am highly grateful to him and the Kano State Coordinator for standing with us”, he said.

Edited by Tukur Muntari. (NAN)

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Education

Banker decries suicide rates by students, admission seekers

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An Executive Banker, Mr Adebayo Adeyinka, has decried the rate at which Nigerian youths were committing suicide due to failure in their academic pursuit.

Adeyinka, the Regional Bank Head, South-West 1, Fidelity Bank Plc, made the assertion at the 2019 National Pre-University Conference in Badagry, organised by CityMood Communications.

“Many Nigerian youths are committing suicide because of academic failure, not knowing that failure is part of life.

“Suicide is not the next thing in life, if you fail the first time, prepare and do it again.

“Nothing can stop you, not even lack of resource can stop you from achieving your dreams, it is only you that can stop you in life,” Adeyinka said.

He urged those students who did not get admission to institutions of their choices after several attempts to work hard and prepare to do it again, saying that nothing good comes easily.

Adeyinka urged students and admission seekers to be free to dream and be focussed.

“A dream is not what you see in your dream, but a dream is that which keeps you awake in the night.

“Have a clear cut goal and ask yourself if I gain admission today to the university, what do I intend to achieve at the end.

“Resist any attempt by anyone to put you in the secret cult. Please never join any cult in school,” he pleaded.

Adeyinka, however, advised them to make good friends and build good network when they gain admission into the university.

Also, Ms Chizobam Ofoegbu, a Confidence Coach, urged the students to be careful about the type of groups they mix up with in higher institution.

Ofoegbu said that peer pressure was the number one killer of youth nowadays.

According to her, peer pressure is when you are easily motivated to sabotage your life and life of others.

Ofoegbu urged students to know the type of friends to keep while in school, adding that bad friendship would destroy their lives.

She also advised them to always associate themselves with people of same character and value.

Commenting, Mr Folaranmi Oyediran, an Author and Youth Leadership expert, urged students seeking admission to know the purpose of their going to the university.

“Knowing the purpose of going to university is to study and become purposeful in life and you must give it everything to succeed.

“University is not a place where you go and play, but to study squarely.

“You will succeed in university without comparing yourself with others.

“You must manage your life within the time allocated to you,” he advised.

Also, Opeyemi Oke, the Executive Director, Equip Africa, advised students that have talents to utilise it.

Oke appealed to parents to allow their children to explore their talents, urging the students to search for their talents and develop them.

Earlier, Mr Sewhupe Akande, Chief Executive, Citymood Communications, said the aims of the event was to enlighten graduating senior secondary school students and young school leavers about higher education pursuit.

“Developments in our Ivory Towers have necessitated a national re-orientation of our admission seekers with the hope of shaping and sharpening their perspective about university education and positioning them for a quick start at excelling on campus.

“With the pedigree of speakers at this conference, participants are guaranteed of receiving knowledge that will impact their lives and nation for good,” he said.

The Nigeria News Agency reports that many students in senior secondary schools and young school leavers within and outside Badagry attended the conference.

Edited by Olagoke Olatoye (NAN)

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Raise teachers’ salary to improve enrolment in Colleges of Education — Committee of Provosts

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The Committee of Provosts (COP) of Colleges of Education in Nigeria on Wednesday urged the Federal Government to raise teacher’s salary towards improving enrolment of students in the colleges.

Prof. Johnson Pongori, National Chairman of COP, said this in an interview with the Nigeria News Agency during the opening of the COP 85th Regular Meeting at Federal College of Education (Technical ) (FCE) (T), Akoka, Lagos.

Pongori, also Provost, Adamawa State College of Education, Hong, said the teaching profession could only be attractive for Nigerian youths if teachers’ salary was increased.

“The Nigerian youths of today are only interested in management courses that enable them to make quick and huge money.

“That is why a lot of them are not interested in teaching and this is affecting enrolment in the colleges of education,” he said.

According to him, teachers in developed countries such as Finland receive similar salary as other professionals in the fields of medicines, engineering and the likes, thus making teaching attractive and competitive.

Pongori said that colleges of education were specialised institutions established to provide qualitative training for teachers who would teach students from creche to tertiary level.

He noted that the teachers were trained to build individuals from cradle into a matured and enlightened citizen, as education was fundamental to the growth of any nation.

The COP Chairman said that any serious government should not ignore the teaching profession because teachers produced professionals in other sectors of the economy.

“It is unfortunate that most people at the helm in our government today are those that benefited more from education through scholarship but are not giving back to the sector.

“Education is not what we should joke with because it affects all facets of the economy,” he said.

According to him, an educated and informed population will be projective, focused and disciplined in their engagements.

Pongori however urged the private sector to partner with the government to improve quality of education in the country by providing infrastructure and support in the training of teachers.

The COP Chairman disclosed that the meeting was being held in Lagos to commiserate with the family of the late Immediate Past Provost of FCE(T), Akoka, Dr Sijibomi Olusanya, who died on July 27.

“This is in line with our tradition and to also extend our condolences to his wife, children and family and that is why the meeting was scheduled to hold at FCE(T), Akoka.

“We also give credit to the late Provost and colleagues for piloting the affairs of the college for eight years and moving it to an enviable status,” he said.

In his welcome address, Dr Wahab Azeez, Provost, FCE(T), Akoka thanked the executives and members of the committee for giving the college the right to host the meeting.

Azeez said the college would surely benefit from the wealth of experience of the provosts and would implement decisions reached at the end of the meeting.

NAN reports that the COP 85th Regular meeting ends on Thursday.

Edited by Wale Ojetimi (NAN)

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Education

Uniben publishes book in honour of outgoing VC, Orumwense

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Prof. Faraday Orumwense, the outgoing Vice Chancellor(VC) of the University of Benin (Uniben) was beside himself with joy on Wednesday as guests at the launch of a book his honour poured endless encomiums on Him.

Orumwense’s five-year tenure at the university, which ends on Nov. 28, was described as very fruitful and rewarding for both staff and students.

The book titled, “Faraday Osasere Orumwense: Footprints of a Vice Chancellor,” was edited by Jacob Ehiorobo.

In his remarks, at the Book Presentation/Launch at the University’s main auditorium, Mr Michael Osasuyi, the institution’s Public Relations Officer, said the book comprised articles by the erudite professors chronicling the milestones of Orumwense’s administration.

Osasuyi said the book contained materials on developmental strides of the University, academic growth, weath creation and how these could further be improved upon by subsequent administrations.

According to him, the book openly presents performance, development and management charts of Orumwense in the areas of infrastructure, health, employment, staff and students’ welfare among others.

Orumwense said he was humbled that the book and its launch had been put together in his honour.

He thanked the committee and the 26 professors for an excellent job, which succinctly captured his achievements and challenges in the book.

Prof Lilian Salami, the incoming VC, in an interview with the Nigeria News Agency commended Orumwense for his administrative diligence while in service.

Salami, who is currently Director General/Chief Executive of the National Institute for Educational Planning and Administration (NIEPA, Ondo, will assume office as the second female VC of Uniben, after Prof. Grace Alele-Williams, on Dec. 4.

According to her, Prof Orumwense has done well for Uniben. “I hope that I will give to Uniben all that I have learnt through my experiences of work in Uniben and different ministries.

“With God on my side, I hope that we can truly move University of Benin to the height and choice of everyone.

“I wish Prof Orumwense well in his life endeavors,” she said.

Salami, professor of Home Economics/Nutritional Education, who hails from Edo was born in Jos, Plateau on Aug. 8, 1956.

Edited by Kevin Okunzuwa/Salif Atojoko (NAN)

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Chikun education authority promises improve welfare for teachers

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The Chikun Local Government Education Authority (LGEA) on Wednesday promised to improve the welfare packages of primary school teachers as part of efforts to improve the delivery of quality basic education in the council.

The Education Secretary in the area, Dr Ibrahim Danmaraya, made the promise in Kaduna, at the opening of a one-day health talk and general medical diagnosis organised by the LGEA.

Nigeria News Agency reports that the health talk was organised for teachers, administrative staff, cooks, Parent Teachers Associations and School-Based Management Committees in the council.

Danmaraya described welfare of teachers as “a key element in the delivery of quality education”, adding that improved welfare would motivate the teachers to give in their best.

According to him, the health talk is one among several welfare packages being rolled out for teaching and non teaching staffs in the local government area.

“This is to ensure that teaching and non teaching staffs are academically sound, healthy, physicality and mentally fit to carry out their academic and administrative duties.

“Also, the education authority, with the support of the Local Government Chairperson and the Kaduna State Government has been doing the best it can to meet the needs of teachers and learners for improved learning outcomes.

“We have recently supplied 1,000 chairs for pupils, provided scholarship to female teachers and the girl child, organised training and retraining programmes to build the capacity of teachers.

“We are equally engaging community members for school improvement among others, while many schools have been renovated, rehabilitated and equipped with instructional materials.”

Also speaking, the LGA Chairperson, Hajiya Hadiza Yahuza, said that the council would continue to support the education authority in meeting the welfare needs of teachers and infrastructure needs of schools.

Yahuza noted that outstanding salaries of teachers were being paid and assured all teachers of government’s commitment to their welfare, stressing that education was among priority areas of the current government.

On his part, Malam Aminu Ibrahim, Director Social Mobilisation in the State Universal Basic Education Board, commended the education authorities for organising the health talk.

Ibrahim, who described the initiative as “the first of its kind” in the LGEA, urged the participants to reciprocate the gesture by being diligent in the discharge of their duties.

Sunday Garba, State Treasurer, Nigerian Union of Teachers, who spoke on behalf of the teachers, thanked the LGEA education secretary for the efforts in meeting the needs of teachers.

“We are particularly thankful for the effort in settling all our outstanding salaries and pray that subsequently, teachers’ salaries would paid as and when due,” Garba said.

Dr Laah Shehu of World Health Alternative Medical Solutions, Barnawa, Kaduna, noted that many people regularly take care of their cars and houses, but rarely take care of their health.

According to him, maintaining a healthy life style will guarantee a long and productive life.

He stressed the importance of regular exercise, good eating habit and regular medical check up to ensure a healthy and productive life.

Edited by Ismail Abdulaziz

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Continuous training of teachers is our top priority — LASUBEB Chairman

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Mr Wahab Alawiye-King, Chairman, Lagos State Universal Basic Education Board, has said that continuous training of teachers and investment in school infrastructure would optimally yield expected results.

Alawiye-King said in a statement on Tuesday that since the state government wanted teachers that were academically and professionally qualified, there was the need for the government to continuously train its workforce.

“We can have the best of infrastructure, if we don’t have the right sets of teachers, I don’t think the learning outcome we are going to get is going to be very encouraging.

“The world is changing, evolving on a daily basis and in order for us to survive in a competitive world, we need extra-ordinary skills.

“We need additional skills and that is why it is necessary for us to provide these skills for teachers,” the LASUBEB chairman said.

He said that the just concluded capacity building workshop for Early Child Care Development Education in Lagos was to enable the teachers be at par with their contemporaries globally.

‘Through the acquisition of necessary skill that is required of them to be competitive anywhere in the world,” he said.

He assured that LASUBEB remained committed to its promise of providing a better educational standard to the people of the state especially through its mantra of ‘leave no child behind’.

Edited by Wale Ojetimi

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