How Edo State Tackles Innovative Education Computing

Governor Godwin Obaseki’s innovative reforms are beginning to yield positive results, with Edo State becoming the state with the fewest out-of-school children in Nigeria. Another round of the training program was organized in August to consolidate the gains made so far, writes Teliat Sule.

Before sunrise on the morning of August 30, 2022, selected teachers and head teachers from public secondary and primary schools in Edo State gathered at Uwa Primary School, Benin City, the state capital.

Their goal was singular: to complete the EdoBESTInduction training, an empowering professional development program for teachers that has revolutionized teaching and learning in Edo State’s basic education ecosystem.

“I am here with a lot of expectations,” said OsamoseBenjamin, principal of Obe Secondary School in Orhionmwon Local Government Area, that morning.

Dressed in a three-piece suit and clutching a black suitcase, the sharp-eyed 30-year-old on duty noted that: “I have heard many times that this training is changing the way teachers approach their work and the how schools are run. I came to see it and experience it first hand,” he said, as a slight smile appeared on his face.

Around the world, the professional development of teachers and other stakeholders in the education sector has received particular attention given the rapidly changing educational demands that require up-to-date skills to manage.

“Educational technology, school district guidelines, and curriculum standards are constantly changing, making it difficult for teachers to keep up with trends and best practices in the field.

Professional development transforms teachers into better and more capable educators by empowering them to create relevant lesson instruction relevant to today’s students.

“Research by the U.S. Department of Education’s Institute of Educational Sciences found that student achievement can improve by up to 21 percentile points through teacher participation in professional development programs. well designed,” according to Queens University of Charlotte.

This is what the administration headed by Governor Obaseki in Edo State has been implementing since taking office.

Match actions to words

In a country where teacher competence and commitment have been continually challenged, the teacher professional development program has been a major area of ​​focus and investment for administrations led by Governor Godwin Obaseki since its inception. .

This move to make teachers fit for the 21st century is in line with an earlier message issued by UNESCO that most governments around the world are now setting new benchmarks for achieving education goals.

An endorsement of the transformation program implemented so far in Edo State came from the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), which recently stated that Edo State has the fewest out-of-school children in Nigeria.

According to UNESCO, out of 20 million out-of-school children in Nigeria, Edo State has only 79,446, which means the state has the least number of out-of-school children in Nigeria. This is an unprecedented feat in the South-South geopolitical zone and in Nigeria as a whole.

“A new school year is starting in many parts of the world. This news should make us happy, but it also reminds us that strong inequalities persist in access to education: 244 million children are still out of school.

No one can accept this situation. Education is a right and we must do everything to ensure that this right is respected for every child,” said Audrey Azoulay, Director-General of UNESCO.

This success has nothing to do with the innovative ways in which Godwin Obaseki has led the administration in Edo State to address primary and secondary school management and reforms since taking office.

It is in the pursuit of transformation who is responsible for the continuing education program which began on August 30, 2022. The program was designed to add approximately 32,000 additional Edo children to EdoBEST, the sector response program. Basic Education of Governor Obaseki.

EdoBEST uses a structured teaching and learning methodology endorsed by Nobel Prize-winning economics professor Michael Kremer as capable of delivering learning gains that replace traditional teaching methods.

In the first two quarters of 2022 alone, 2,602 teachers, school leaders, learning and development officers (LDOs) and quality assurance officers (QAOs) were retrained to enable them to perform of their mandate to provide quality education to students in Edo State.

The ongoing training brings together 1,445 teachers and headteachers from the 18 local government areas of Edo State. What is even more interesting is that it is facilitated by the Learning and Development Officers (LDOs) of the Edo State Universal Basic Education Board (Edo SUBEB) who have been strategically prepared to support the process of continuous professional development in the basic education ecosystem.

Additionally, most of the trainees are EdoSTAR teachers who have reduced the teacher gap in the junior high school system by 95%.

This move to make teachers fit for the 21st century is in line with an earlier message issued by UNESCO that most governments around the world are now setting new benchmarks for achieving education goals.

“The majority of governments have now set national benchmarks for progress towards the crucial goal of education: this is a sign of serious commitment. But the international community now has a responsibility to redouble its efforts by filling the remaining data gaps and prioritizing education financing. This is the only way to respond to identified needs and create real transformative impact,” said Stefania Giannini, UNESCO Assistant Director-General for Education, in July.

Read also: International Youth Day: How EdoBEST builds an environment where every young person is a winner

Inside the training rooms

Pre-service training is a key element of Governor Obaseki’s education sector transformation strategy. A 10-day personalized training, designed to equip educators with the skills needed to deliver quality basic education.

It addresses a cocktail of themes from the modern and emerging education sector, including the role of technology in the 21st century classroom, modern student motivation techniques, child protection strategies, new school administration and classroom management techniques, gender-based violence and child protection. strategies and other important emerging best practices in education.

Teachers receive hands-on training during the 10-day program, observed and corrected during practical sessions. The sessions are designed to provide support to teachers in other facets of teaching, from interpreting the curriculum to understanding students’ needs in order to motivate them to succeed.

“Only those who have been in the training know the depth of what we are taught here,” Osamose said, after experiencing four days in the program.

“The facilitators even teach us practical ways to work with teachers we’ve traditionally described as difficult,” he said, with a sense of newfound seriousness.

“The Governor deserves a handshake and a hug,” Osamose added.

Also speaking on the impact of the training program, Aghahowa Augustina, a teacher from Asoro Grammar School, who has been teaching English for 12 years, noted that her “mentality changed within days of the program.”

“Before, many of us used to copy everything from textbooks and teach as much as we had time, even if not all the students understood it. But with the advanced teaching method we are exposed to here, we now know that students should become friends with their teachers and be free to express themselves when necessary,” she noted.

Perfection for sustainability

Speaking on the first day of training, OzavizeSalami, Executive Chairman of Edo SUBEB, said, “This is a landmark achievement for us at Edo SUBEB. This is a major milestone as we expand the education reforms of the Governor Godwin Obaseki-led administration to fully integrate JS schools in line with the ongoing JSS disarticulation process.

“The government is the largest provider of basic education services in the state and we are optimistic that our deliberate investment in teachers through our professional development programs will lead to measurable improvement in learning outcomes from all our students located in urban, rural or even difficult areas. areas to reach.

“The mandate is to sustain the gains made so far in the basic education sector reforms and domesticate our EdoBEST program so that it remains a legacy for the people of the State of ‘Edo, even after this administration is long gone.

“His Excellency, Governor Godwin Obaseki is also committed to filling the teacher gap, particularly through the EdoSTAR scholarship program, where 3,000 people have been employed to fill teaching positions in the primary and secondary schools in the state,” Salami said.

These scholarship recipients will benefit from the new minimum wage recently announced by the Governor.
Because of the strategic role teachers play in the basic education ecosystem, Governor Godwin Obaseki is prioritizing teacher professional development as a vehicle for accelerating learning.

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