Learn Africa to Reward NECO Champions, Teachers

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Funmi Ogundare

Learn Africa Plc has concluded plans to organize this year’s Learn Africa-NECO excellence awards to recognise and honour distinguished NECO candidates, schools and teachers in all states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

The Chairman of the organisation, Chief Emeka Iwerebon, said the effort is in accordance with its corporate tradition of promoting academic excellence, while urging schools and candidates to look out for the announcement of the 2016 award winners, as well as dates of the awards.
He said the company established the Learn Africa Education Development Foundation in 2012 to support the development of the education sector through the provision of infrastructure and engagement in philanthropic activities that promote learning.

“Consequently, it instituted the annual LearnAfrica-NECO Excellence Awards for students, teachers and schools at the senior secondary level. The objective was and remains to underscore the importance of excellence in education to our national development, as well as encourage hard work, diligent scholarship and healthy competition amongst students, teachers and schools.”
Iwerebon added that the awards recognise the top three candidates at the June/July Senior School Certificate Examination (SSCE) conducted by the National Examinations Council at the national level and in every state and the FCT, Abuja.

He expressed delight about the overall best candidates in Mathematics, English Language, Biology and History, adding that while the teacher from the school that produced the first placed candidate is rewarded while all the schools that produced winners receive free books from the foundation.

“We make bold to say that the successes recorded at the SSCE are not without the contributions of our New Concept Mathematics and New Concept English, our ever relevant textbooks on Mathematics and English Language at the secondary level respectively.”
He called for an increase in the funds allocated to the education sector in order to deal with glaring deficiencies in school facilities, access to high quality instructional materials and teacher training.

He also stressed the need for parents to show greater interest in the upbringing of their children by monitoring their activities, emphasising good moral values and cooperating with the schools authorities, adding that the provision of conducive learning environment, attractive remuneration for teachers among other initiatives would help in preparing students for great success in examinations and their future careers.

“We must all quickly address the compelling need to raise good citizens that can do Nigeria proud globally and contribute their quotas to the continuous growth and prosperity of our great country.”

He commended NECO for the successful conduct of the June/July 2016 SSCE and the timely release of the results, adding, “we also wish to congratulate the candidates that sat for the examination on the improvement in the general performance and results when compared with those of 2015.

“It is most gratifying to note that 88.51 per cent of the candidates got credit passes in at least five subjects, including Mathematics and English Language. Besides, 84.54 per cent of candidates got credit pass and above in English Language, while 80.16 per cent got credit pass and above in Mathematics.
“We also note with utmost delight that the council has intensified its campaign against examination malpractices by putting in place appropriate punitive measures, including cancelling the results of those candidates with established cases, as well as de-recognising the schools that aided cheating.”

Iwerebon added: “We are convinced that these actions will dissuade others who may want to engage in cheating and sensitise them on the need for hard-work, determination, honesty and perseverance in their quest for academic laurels. Undoubtedly, these remarkable achievements are clear indicators that the efforts of the governments and other relevant groups are beginning to yield the desired results.”