By Funmi Ogundare
Oke-Odo Senior High School, Alimosho has emerged winner of the 2020 Lagos State Schools Debate (Season 10) with 75 points, defeating Lagos State Senior Model College, Kankon, Badagry, 73 points and Babs-Fafunwa Millennium Secondary School, Ojodu, 71 points to the second and third positions respectively.
In the junior category, Alimosho Junior Grammar School; Lagos State Model Junior College, Kankon and Lagos State Junior Model College, Igbokuta, came first, second and third positions respectively.
The star prize of the primary school category went to Olisa Primary School, Mushin, while the second and third prizes were won by African Church Primary School, Alimosho and Saint Agnes Primary School, Kosofe respectively.
Speaking at the virtual grand finale of the programme recently, the Commissioner for Education, Mrs. Folasade Adefisayo said the competition, which is aimed at producing socially stable and self-reliant students that can easily integrate into the larger society, is no doubt serving its purpose.
She said the competition over the years, has enabled students to think critically, analysing topical issues that concern them and relate to their environment.
“This gave them an opportunity to express themselves and proffer solutions to situations affecting the nation and beyond,” she said.
Apart from cognitive skills taught in the classroom, Adefisayo said the competition created an avenue for the students to explore their public speaking skills, which boosted their confidence, made them more assertive, adding that the debate enabled them to read more and do research about various topics and trending issues.
She said the initiative is in line with the education and technology agenda of the Babajide Sanwo-Olu administration and its commitment to the revitalisation process of the sector and ensuring that technology is integrated to improve learning outcomes, adding that the programme was held online due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Adefisayo congratulated all participants, saying, “everyone is a winner and no one should feel dejected for not emerging the overall best. I consider you all as winners and deserve to be celebrated.”
In her remarks, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Education, Mrs. Abosede Adelaja commended the teachers, saying that irrespective of the schools closure, they have devised means of grooming the students virtually for the competition while engaging them on how to make their salient points and convince the audience.
“Learning should not just be academics, but creating an enabling environment where the child can display his/her skills and abilities is very germane.”
She thanked Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu for his support through the provision of qualitative education to enable children achieve their dreams of becoming whatever they want to become in life.
“The ministry will not relent in its efforts of providing a habitable environment for teaching and learning.”