Obaseki’s Basic Education Reform: More schools earmarked for Edo BEST

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…to train 5000 teachers on tech-based teaching

…to sack, prosecute teachers for child sexual abuse

The Edo State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB), has said that the state government will introduce the Edo Basic Education Sector Transformation (Edo-BEST) initiative to more public primary schools in September.

Special Adviser to the Governor on Basic Education and Acting Chairman, Edo SUBEB, Dr. Joan Osa-Oviawe, disclosed this in a chat with journalists in Benin City, the state capital.

Explaining that Edo BEST is an initiative of Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, to transform the basic education sub-sector in the state, she said, “Edo BEST is holistic and all-encompassing and has been put in place to look at issues that may negatively impact pupils’ ability to learn, and find ways to ameliorate them.

She said, “Starting in September, parents and guardians will be arrested for not sending their children to school. Our goal is to ensure that up to 50 per cent of public primary schools from Kindergarten to primary six are added to the programme.”

On the package for teachers in the programme, she said, “We are going to train approximately 5000 teachers. We are in the process of finalising the modalities for the training.”

According to her, “One of the key areas we are adding to the training curriculum is prevention of child sexual abuse. Our pupils need to be trained on how to avoid child predators.”

She noted that teachers will be trained on how to look out for signs indicating if a child is being abused, and how to engage in a rescue routine, adding, “Teachers have been duly informed that anyone of them caught sexually abusing their pupils will be dismissed from service and prosecuted.

She explained that “Within a one-week span, we have reported cases of child sexual abuse from Akoko Edo, Owan East and Uhunmwode Local Government Areas.

“SUBEB will ensure that the girls’ education is not truncated. We commend teachers and school heads that are the heroes in this move, for their roles in discovering pupils that are being abused,” she added.

She said SUBEB is putting a structure in place to address the problem, adding, “We have a Rapid Response Team comprising representatives of our Guidance and Counseling Unit, Legal, Social Mobilisation and Quality Assurance units.”