Why Govt should revise school curriculum now
The federal government has been urged to revise the present school curriculum at all levels to ensure the country turn out employable graduates.
The appeal was made at the 21st Annual Lecture, award of honours and postgraduates scholarships of the Stephen Oluwole Awokoya Foundation titled “Science Education in Nigeria: The Story so Far.”
In a lecture delivered by Prof. U.M.O Ivowi, titled “Science Education in Nigeria: The Story so Far” the don traced the history and development of school curriculum in Nigeria and detailed various changes it underwent over the years.
Ivowi particularly stated that at a point there way a directive from the federal government to change to thematic form so as to accommodate subjects that were deems important to the education of Nigerian youth. He was of the view that the school curriculum was unnecessarily burden with extraneous subjects that reduce its potent application to effective teaching.
Speaking on the worrisome trend of high unemployment in Nigeria, Chairman, Board of Trustees of the foundation, Senator Olabiyi Durojaiye was of the view that the school curriculum should be revised to make it more compact, and tailored to meet the high standard require by the Nigeria employers.
Participants at the event also appealed to the government to consider reviewing school curriculum so that Nigeria can turn out graduates that are consider suitable for employment anywhere in the world.
Meanwhile the foundation awarded postgraduate scholarships to eight outstanding Nigerian students and honoured three great Nigerians whose efforts and contributions has helped improve quality of education, particularly science education in Nigeria.
According to the organizers, the foundation was established to promote science education in Nigeria institutions and also award scholarships to distinguished persons for postgraduate’s studies in science related disciplines. Other are of focus includes the creation of science education endowments in various institutions and the regular payment of subvention to science institutions, faculties, departments of higher institutions to assist in funding scientific research and equipping science laboratories and libraries among others.
The Chairman of the event was Mr Pascal G. Dozie, the chairman of MTN Nigeria limited while the Guest of Honour was Mr Segun Ogunsanya, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Airtel Network Limited.
The book, “science and The Challenge of development” was reviewed by Dr Olufemi Olugbile.
The honorees include High Chief Mrs Wilfred Adefolahan Awosika, the Chairman of Chrisland schools limited and Chancellor Chrisland University, Engr. Olufemi A. Lalude, Chairman, Crestech Engineering limited and Engr. Osborne Olumide Phillips, Chairman, Promaco Associates and Founder, Dowen College, Lagos.
The beneficiaries of postgraduate scholarship include Okesanya O. Temitope, Lawore Laposi Titilope, Umar Bala Ningi, Oladele Tolulope Ayo, and Okafor Obiora Clement. Others are Adeleke Daniel Damilare, Ayoola Oladipupo Froancis and Aigbokhan Ese Michelle, who is the only female among the beneficiaries.
According to the organisers, the award covers tuition and board and is valued at #200,000 per student per annum. It is renewable each year for a maximum of three years, provided the awardee maintains a good record of academic performance.
The students according to the organizers were selected as the most outstanding out of 133 nominated from 33 universities in Nigeria. This year awardees all had many distinctions in their Senior School Certificates Examinations and without exception graduated with first class degrees, with Cummulative Grade Average of 4.70 and above.
According to Dr Fola Awokoya, since 1996, the foundation has awarded 92 postgraduate scholarships to deserving Nigeria students. The award has been used for both Master courses and Ph.D programmes with 21 universities as beneficiaries so far.
In his remark, Durojaiye described Awosika as an Amazon, a strong woman who blazed a unique trail right through the Creche, primary, secondary up to the tertiary level of education.
In her response, Awosika who commended Durojaiye for his efforts and focused leadership of the foundation went down memory lane to praise the pioneering role the late Awokoya played as Chief Obafemi Awolowo Minister of Education in the introduction of free education throughout the then Western Region. She said she was a beneficiary of a scholarship scheme for girls, a brainchild of Awokoya to give opportunity to brilliant Nigerian girls.
In his acceptance speech, Lalude whose giant stride in the scientific field and the development of the Nigeria oil industry was recognised, expressed his appreciation for the recognition and stated that for him, the honour is not to be taken lightly.
Phillips, an honoree, advocated the transfer of knowledge from experience intellectuals to the next generation. He revealed that in order to impact the lives of young people while at the University of Ibadan, he lectured for six years free of charge. Also, at the University of Lagos, his salary was used to sponsor four students every year. He afterward volunteered to mentor Okesanya, one of the beneficiary, who is about to study Chemical and Petroleum Engineering.
While appealing for financial support, Durojaiye said inadequate fund limit the extent the foundation can go by way of annual awards of scholarships. He noted that they were only able to award seven in 2015, eight in 2014 and six in each of the two preceding years.
Among the foundation other achievements was the refurbishment of the science laboratory of Molusi College, Ijebu-igbo.
Present at the event were Rear Admiral Afolabi Macauley, Dr Rotimi Coker, Prof. Victor chukwuma, Sir B.O. A. Williams, Bishop Bako, Prof. Austin Ewori, and Mr Oye Odukale of Leadway Assurance.
Students of Grace High School, Gbagada and Dowen College were also present at the event.
Some of the past honourees include, Dr Bamanga Tukur, Dr Wale Babalaakin and Senator Daisy Danjuma.
The Late Awokoya was the mover of the motion that led to the introduction of Free Primary Education Programme in Western Nigeria, under the leadership of Chief Awolowo.
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