This Day (Lagos)

Nigeria: FG Flays Performance of Unity College Principals

The Federal Ministry of Education has expressed dissatisfaction with the quality of leadership provided by principals of federal unity colleges for their respective schools.

Minister of State for Education, Mr. Nyesom Wike, who made this known in Enugu while declaring open the Annual General Meeting (AGM) of principals of federal unity colleges, said as a result of the poor performance of the current principals, such appointments would henceforth be based on measurable criteria.

"Let me make it clear to all of us that the minister of education and my humble self are not satisfied with the quality of leadership that you offer in the unity colleges and therefore we are determined to raise it in order to improve the performance and achievement levels of our students.

"From now on, appointment of principals to the unity colleges will be based on measurable criteria to be established and adopted soon by the Federal Ministry of Education."

Wike stressed that Principals' retention in office would be determined by the outcome of a summative performance evaluation to be administered annually on all principals of the unity colleges, adding that the income and expenditure accounts would be subjected to annual audit by external auditors.

In his remarks, the Chairman, Senate Committee on Education, Senator Uche Chukwumerije, commended the ministry for taking measures to revive the unity colleges.

Acting Governor of the state, Sunday Onyebuchi, who was represented by the Commissioner for Education, Uche Otoanya, expressed delight about the Federal Government's investment in facilities and the academics in unity colleges.

The Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Education, Dr. MacJohn Nwaobiala, urged the principals to work hard to achieve the government's developmental goals for the schools.

Highpoint of the occasion was the presentation of awards and prizes to outstanding principals, schools and directors by Second Republic Vice-President, Dr. Alex Ekwueme.

Educators Produce Teachers' Guide for Revised Curriculum

Teacher educators, curriculum development experts, content specialists, policy makers, professionals from the private sector and other stakeholders across the country recently converged on Lagos for a workshop to develop teachers' guide for each of the subjects in the revised basic education curriculum.

Organised by the Nigerian Educational Research and Development Council (NERDC), the week-long exercise was also organised to develop the curricula, instructional materials and train teachers on the use of the curriculum.

In his remark, Executive Secretary of the Council, Prof. Godswill Obioma, said the move was important, as it would enhance teachers' ability to teach and relate well with their students.

"The development of the teachers' guides is an innovation, as curriculum development in the past was not accompanied by focused teachers' guide."

Participants in the writing workshop were grouped into their areas of specialisation, each group had six writers and worked on the conceptual framework for the guide, which was developed in Benin City, Edo State.

Obioma said the various units and components of the conceptual framework include understanding the revised curriculum; breaking of the curriculum into syllabus, scheme of work, unit of work, lesson plan and their preparation; modern teaching approaches and lesson plan; sample lesson planning, based on modern teaching approaches, among others.

"The eminent personalities at the workshop have successfully come up with draft copies of the teachers' guide. The next step will involve the critique and editorial workshops. This exercise is important because they are to be distributed to schools nationwide alongside the revised basic education curriculum early next year. This will be followed by the printing and subsequent distribution to all public schools through the state ministries of education. Teachers will also be trained on the use of the guide in all the six geo-political zones of the country."

Asked how teachers would be empowered to implement the curriculum and the guide successfully, he said: "At NERDC, after we prepare the curriculum, we carry out national sensitisation. In fact, we have concluded all arrangements to carry out national sensitisation for teachers and it is done on the trainers' basis. Teachers in both public and private schools will be acquainted with the curriculum and will be sensitised on the challenges that exist in order to achieve an effective implementation of the curriculum."

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