Expanding educational outcomes through the reintroduction of scholarships, By Rahma Oladosu

Anything that might inspire capacity building to save public education at this point in our national experience should be supported. And while the government’s proposal for scholarships in the range of 50,000 to 75,000 naira at this stage of the country’s economic situation can be said to be quite commendable, yet other levels of support are needed. for building a strong public educational capacity…

Teaching is a very complex activity, a social practice that takes place in a specific context such as time, place, culture, socio-political and economic situations. It is therefore shaped by the values ​​of these specific contexts.

Growing up, our parents and teachers were usually the first to have a significant impact on our lives. Indeed, in the youngest years, students trust their teachers completely and listen to them more than their parents.

In other words, teachers do not just stick to their teaching role, but adapt to various roles as needed. Teachers become our friends when we are sad, they take care of us like our parents when we are hurt. Teachers are also very important in the lives of parents, who expect a lot from them in the supervision of their children.

All of this shows the importance and impact of teachers in any society, and the need to sincerely appreciate them for all their good works made a whole day devoted to them. It is a day we all know as World Teachers Day which is often celebrated on October 5 every year.

The idea of ​​celebrating teachers took root in many countries during the 19th century, with local educators or important educational milestones being celebrated in many cases.

Recently, during the celebration of World Teachers’ Day, the Federal Government announced a proposal to provide scholarships in the amount of N75,000 per semester to undergraduate students pursuing education courses at public institutions and N50,000 for those enrolled in the National Certificate In Education (RCE) programs at our Colleges of Education.

Education Minister Adamu Adamu, who made the disclosure, said the federal government’s reintroduction of such scholarships as policy is expected to be implemented this year.

Adamu also clarified that there would be a clause for those who would benefit from the program, as these students from public institutions would have to sign pledges to serve the government for at least five years after graduation.

In order to make the scholarship award policy workable and sustainable, the Registrar and Chief Executive Officer of the Teachers Registration Council of Nigeria (TRCN), Professor Olusegun Ajiboye explained that the Federal Government has tied the payments to the Education Fund. Higher Education Trust (TETFund), which is an existing funding/advocacy agency for higher education institutions in the country.

TETFund was originally established as the Education Trust Fund (ETF), before being renamed as a response agency created to provide additional support to all levels of public institutions of Higher Education. Its main objective is to use the funding, alongside project management, for the rehabilitation, restoration and consolidation of higher education in Nigeria.

The Response Agency’s main source of revenue is the 2% school tax levied on the taxable profits of companies registered in Nigeria. The Federal Inland Revenue Services (FIRS) collects this tax on behalf of the Fund.

Although TETFUND’s board and management have yet to react to its newly proposed mandate to intervene in the provision of scholarships to students, given the FUND’s track record in supporting educational outcomes in the country. thanks to the provision of different levels of infrastructure, one can hope for its more positive impact at this new level.

The case for such a crucial intervention in the teaching profession in Nigeria by investing in crucial manpower is evident in the very low teacher to student ratio in our public educational institutions, as many shy away from what has become a “sufferhead profession”. The sad result of this situation can be seen in the poor school results as evidenced by the declining results of students and, unfortunately, the high number of out-of-school children in many parts of the country.

Anything that might inspire capacity building to save public education at this point in our national experience should be supported. And while the government’s proposal for scholarships in the range of 50,000 to 75,000 naira at this stage of the country’s economic situation can be said to be quite commendable, yet other levels of support are needed. for building strong public education capacity, and making it a more holistic policy with a better chance of success.

With the involvement of TETFund in disbursing these scholarships, it is sincerely hoped that this will attract more many young and capable Nigerians to enter the teaching profession. Nigerian public education needs all the support it can get at this point.

Rahma Olamide Oladosu writes from Abuja and can be reached via: [email protected]

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