Edo State Governor, Mr Godwin Obaseki has approved the restoration of subventions to public schools. The Executive Chairman, Edo SUBEB, Dr. Joan Osa Oviawe, made this known during an interactive session with the Executive Members of the Association of Primary School Heads of Nigeria (AOPSHON).
Speaking at the occasion, the Chairman expressed the Board’s dismay over the actions of some head teachers who indulge in illegal activities in public schools. She noted that the Board would sanction anyone found culpable of such ignoble acts.
The most recent of such despicable actions includes the enrollment of external pupils from private schools for the Primary 6 Common Entrance Examination in public schools, collection of illegal fees from pupils, enrollment of Primary 5 pupils in public schools for the Common Entrance Examination; an examination meant only for Primary 6 pupils, amongst other illegal actions that contravene the rules and regulations, ethics and ethos of public school administration in the State. According to the Chairman, “It is a gross violation of the Universal Basic Education Act for pupils to be charged fees no matter under what guise. That is why even the primary six exam is free to public school pupils.”
The Board Chairman who was deeply concerned about the development noted that the Board would go after head teachers who indulge in such acts of corruption and perverting the system, stressing that the Pandora’s Box of those involved in the practice would soon be made public and they would be made to face the full wrath of the law.
She noted that the Governor Godwin Obaseki administration has expended much effort in providing the enabling environment for pupils in the State to have an unrestrained access to free and quality education and no one who tries to rubbish the administration’s efforts or try to drag its reputable name through the mud would be spared.
The Edo BEST initiative has so far seen to the training of over 7,000 teachers and head teachers in tech-based teaching techniques and modern pedagogy, over two hundred and eighty-five (285) Field Officers called; Social Mobilization Officers, Learning and Development Officers and Quality Assurance Officers. Additionally, 11,600 School Based Management Committee (SBMC) members have been trained to support government in overseeing the management of public primary schools.
Approximately 868,000 textbooks have been distributed for free in 612 public primary schools currently captured in the programme with over 170,000 pupils benefitting. To date, electronic records complete with pupil’s photo and contact information of parents have been created for 170,000 pupils and counting. In addition, 232 public schools across the 18 LGAs of the State are currently under renovation and construction with more schools to be constructed in 33 oil producing communities.
These and many more she noted, are the recent giant strides of the Governor Godwin Obaseki administration in the basic education sub-sector and the trend cannot be broken by the greed and recidivism of a few. She therefore issued a directive to all head teachers who have indulged in illegal collection from pupils in public schools to return such illegal sum between now and Friday 5th April, 2019 or face severe sanctions from the Board.
Responding, the chairman AOPSHON, Edo State Council, Com. J.S Ogene, thanked the Board Chairman for the meeting and pleaded for time to get their members informed. According to him “No reasonable individual would want to circumvent and be a clog on the wheels of progress of what the State Government is doing in basic Education.”
Also speaking at the occasion was the state NUT Chairman, Com. Pius Okhuolegbe who noted that the State Council will convene an emergency meeting of the Local Council to reprimand and warn head teachers who indulge in such acts to refrain forthwith.
Edo BEST provides quality education for every child
Photo 1. 4th L-R: Chairman AOPSHON, Edo State Council, Comr. J.S Ogene, Executive Chairman Edo SUBEB, Dr. Joan Osa Oviawe, NUT Chairman, Comr. Pius Okhuolegbe, Board members Edo SUBEB and Members of AOPSHON.