Government Determined to Revitalise Nigeria’s Education Sector

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Education is perhaps the most essential tool for our personal development. It is only through education that you can develop your future and contribute towards the development of society. Thus governments, along with individuals, communities, corporations and charitable institutions, should work towards the development of education. By increasing investment in education, we can guide our children to become world leaders in the future. But many developing nations, like Nigeria, are currently under the grasp of illiteracy which is hampering the social and economic development of the country. However, Nigeria is taking several steps to counter the situation and make education accessible to all children.

Educational Development in Nigeria

Recently in the 20th Nigeria Economic Summit, Vice President Namadi Sambo has requested collaborators and stakeholders to join the national government in dealing with challenges in education. The stakeholders offered various solutions for transforming Nigeria’s education sector at the summit conducted by the Nigerian Economic Summit Group and the National Planning Commission. Sambo believes that this transformation can be possible only through the combined efforts of the Government, the private sector, the leadership of the States, development partners, Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), and even parents.

The federal administration is focussed on modifying the education sector as it is a major factor in positioning Nigeria among the 20 leading global economies by 2020.

Vice President Sambo said, “Several policy initiatives are being implemented to facilitate and improve adult literacy and school enrolment at all levels of our educational institutions. We intend to develop a skilled workforce which will be able to drive the development of the Nigerian economy, drive change and innovation and ensure that Nigeria attains her rightful place in the comity of nations. This is consistent with our aspiration of becoming one of the 20 largest economies in the world by year 2020.”

Collaboration of Stakeholders

It is important that different parties co-operate and collaborate with each other. Thus teachers, education experts, business community members and the private sector should engage in productive dialogue in order to make sure that the strategic plan is implemented effectively. A well developed education system is the foundation of a modern nation as it helps to create a culture of learning and improves acceptance of modern ideas. This helps the people of a country to develop various skills, gain relevant knowledge and adopt values which help them to reach their true potential.

Frank Nweke, director-general of the Nigerian Economic Summit Group, said “The Nigerian education sector is in dire straits and requires both public and private sector intervention, if the country is to fulfil its potential as not only a regional powerhouse, but as a global player.”

Future of Nigeria’s Education

Nigeria is now getting set to address the challenges of the education sector and reach the standards followed in other developed nations. In 2011, the Presidential Task force on Education was launched which marked the first prominent step in achieving the goals of improving the sector. Vice President Namadi Sambo indicated that the private sector is ready and willing to facilitate the government at various levels in order to re-position the national education system.

If the education system of a country is faltering then national development and growth becomes doubtful. Thus the federal government is now determined to facilitate the extensive reforms that will be needed to re-position the country in the world map.

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Major Stakeholders in Education Sector Showing Keen Interest in Nigeria

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Many African countries appear to have relinquished their developmental responsibilities under the excuse of foreign aid. They shift the developmental responsibilities to the donor communities. The situation in these countries is such that almost every crucial sector, influencing national economies, in African countries is being run by the donor states and agencies.

Fund to boost the Universal Basic Education in Nigeria

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Mr. Gordon Brown, former Prime Minister of Britain and UN Special Convoy on Global Education, revealed the mutual programme initiated by United States Agency for International Development (USAID), The United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DFID), the Development Commission of the European Union and the Global Partnership for Education to inject $250m, besides Federal Government’s contribution of the same amount for giving a boost to the Universal Basic Education (UBE) in Nigeria.

Mr. Brown further revealed that government of Nigeria should ‘submit an application from time to time for the next seven years term will be devoted to education development in Nigeria’.

Such external interventions can help developing countries tackle the funding gap in educational sector, especially at the basic level. Nigeria has now a great opportunity to transform primary education for the better, including enrolment numbers, staff training, development of educational infrastructure and overall education quality.

Intel’s new education solution to help Nigerian students

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Many stakeholders in the education sector are showing a keen interest in the development of education in Nigeria. In another development, world’s leading chip maker company, Intel has designed a new education solution to provide students access to free and cheap e-learning resources.

The Intel Explore and Learn Marketplace education solution is a learning tool for the keen learners of all the ages and offers learning materials like examination papers, podcasts, books and instruction videos.

This solution of offering online learning materials was launched by Intel in Lagos and is aimed at solving the

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educational needs at elementary as well as more advanced learning stages.

Bunmi Ekundare, Intel’s country manager for West Africa, said the solution would benefit all the stakeholders in education sector, including parents and teachers.

Mr. Ekundare says, “For us at Intel, we are not just focused on emerging technologies but also on the best way to deploy these technologies to ensure that it is relevant to all stakeholders involved.”

African Centre of Excellence, funded by World Bank

In addition to all the developments, the World Bank has shortlisted 15 out of 53 proposals from different Nigerian universities for final appraisal for African Centre of Excellence, which is funded by the World Bank itself.

Thirty universities from Nigeria, Togo, Cameroon, Senegal, Ghana, Benin and Burkina Faso successfully made into the final stage. The World Bank will fund $8 million to the successful applicants.

A Ray of Hope in Nigeria

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In Nigeria, primary as well as higher education has been a matter of concern for a long time. Poor educational infrastructure, poverty, lack of education, unstable socio-political setup and many other factors are responsible for the plight of education in Nigeria.

However, with powerful stakeholders showing enthusiast over the development of education system in Nigeria, there is a hope educational scenario in Nigeria is going to change in near future.