AFTA Harps on PPP in Education Sector

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To strike the balance between teachers and students for positive academic performance, Arc Light Foundation Teachers Academy (AFTededitedA) has advocated for Private Public Partnership (PPP) to raise competent teachers who will rescue the Nigerian students from academic failure.

While addressing the journalists at the inaugural ceremony of AFTA recently in Lagos themed ‘Teaching For Transformation’, The Chief Executive Officer, Mrs. Abimbola Obasanya, noted that the struggle for academic excellence cannot be accomplished by the government alone but with effort of private-public partnership, a height can be attained.

“We are contributing our quota in nation building, we are not waiting for the government because we feel empowerment in education is very important in Nigeria. I saw things were falling apart but I also saw solutions; I see Nigerian students being the best in the whole world and we are getting there. I believe in private-public partnership. We cannot leave everything to the government but we should learn to influence our sectors by sharing the little we have and know,” she said.

Abimbola said that for the students to excel in their academics, the journey must begin from the teachers’ devotion and competency to impact, which AFTA is supporting in the transformation of the teachers education.

She said: “transforming the teachers education in Nigeria is also very important because training of the teachers will definitely reflect on the students. In colleges we have a lot of teachers that are out of the classroom which is not proper. So what we are doing is to feel the gaps by engaging the teachers by teaching them on how to be the best.”

She urged that the government should allow more private-public participation to promote collaboration. According to her, AFTA will like to take up some schools, private and government for training, confirming that there are a lot of schools with good facilities.

Similarly, the Chief Executive Officer, Incubator Africa, Mrs. Alero Ayida-Otobo explained that the education sector has been facing challenges because the government does not understand the importance of education, resulting to a low budget allocation, which is why the sector is still crawling.

“If we want to transform the educational system of any nation, focus and quality of the teachers are needed. We have all the resources to turn things around In Nigeria but to dedicate the resources to education is the problem. The government is yet to understand that focusing on education is critical, education has not been given enough budget.” She concluded that “it takes partnership between the government and the private sector to solve the problems in education.”

The Lagos State Director General, Office of Education Quality Assurance, Mrs. Ronke Soyombo, who was a guest speaker at the event, revealed that students fail because there is no synergy between curriculum and the examination, consequently, resulting to mass failure.

Soyombo said education has gone far from acquiring knowledge but also to help the student to acquire skills to be creative and innovative which the Lagos State Government is working tirelessly on.
“Problems in Education are not from the students but because there is no synergy between the curriculum and the examination,” she said. “Another problem can be traced to leadership and management. Some students can read but don’t understand and the problem is their foundation. The foundation must be well built. Obsolete education cannot produce the best employee we desire.

“Teachers are going through training under Lagos State Government to update them on the changes and development in education. Basically our major task is strategising on how our students gets better and ensure the teachers keeps themselves abreast of all changes. We are not just training teachers, but teachers that can help the students to be creative and innovative. Education is not about knowledge anymore but about skills. How we can bring out the skills in these children is key.” Commending AFTA she said, “they have been doing well in training teachers but we still need more arms to assist. If we can get more foundations to support then we will be able to get a lot of things right.”