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BREAKING: Osun Govt Replies Aregbesola Over His Comment On Education System

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  • Osun Govt has replied Aregbesola over his comment on Education System.

THE NATION REPORTERS reports that the Osun State Government has replied the Ministry of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola over his comment on state of education.

This medium recalls that Aregbesola had said he was pained by current happenings in Osun State as far as development issues are concerned.

 

One of such developments according to Aregbesola was the poor state of education in the state.

 

Aregbesola stated this as he bagged Life Time Achievement Award from the National Parent Teacher Association of Nigeria on Thursday.

He said “Osun was ranked as one of the 10th largest economy in Nigeria, ranked as 2nd highest in schools enrolment/attendance, next to Lagos State with enrolment moving from 15 to 45, and later to over 65 per cent by the time I left.

 

“But sadly today, the situation has changed. And it pained me that the vision and capacity that we demonstrated in delivering services to the people have been arrested. I am only putting the records straight and not to castigate anybody.

 

“In terms of security of lives and property, Osun was first in Nigeria peace index according to statistics from the National Bureau of Statistics (2018). Those who attempted to rob a bank in Osun paid the supreme price for their action as they were neutralised by security forces. We invested heavily on security and lifted over 700,000 people out of poverty.”

However, in a swift response on Friday evening, the Osun State Commissioner for Education, Hon. Folorunso Bamisayemi said in a statement that the current administration has not destroyed education as alleged by the Minister.

He said: “Our attention has been drawn to the comment on the state of Education in Osun State by the former governor of Osun state, Mr Rauf Aregbesola, while receiving an award in his office, in Abuja on Thursday 22nd of September, 2022.

“While we recognize the right of Mr Aregbesola to praise himself to high heavens, we will like to set the records straight without attacking anybody.

“The current administration has not destroyed education as alleged by him. Rather, this administration has been working hard to improve the standard and quality of public education and take it out of the deep hole where it was when this administration came on board.

“We inherited an education system where principals, head teachers and teachers generally were heavily demoralized as a result of half salary payment by the then Aregbesola administration. We took over an education system where students lost interest in schooling as a result of incessant attacks and distruption of school activities by cultists, hoodlums and roughnecks posing as students undetected because of the single uniform policy of the previous administration.

“We were appointed to rescue a system where public schools performance in external examinations was below 20% if contributions of private schools are subtracted from the combined results released by WAEC from 2014 to 2018 after the former administration has been in charge for over 5 years and has committed over 25 billion naira.

“The combined matriculable percentage pass for those years are in the public space for all to see. What then have we done since we came on board to address the rot inherited:

1) Abolition of the automatic promotion policy of government. Unlike what obtained under the last administration, we have put a stop to automatic promotion. Students who failed our unified promotion examinations are now mandated to repeat.

2) Peaceful and safe learning environment.
We have effectively eliminated indiscipline, school cultism, invasion and distruption of academic activities by roughnecks and other vices by simply reversing the single uniform policy of the last administration.

Now we easily identify and punish any errant student in any of our schools. Teachers and students no longer panic when they are going to school as the learning environment is now safe and peaceful. The statistics are there for all to see. No school has been attacked or invaded by hoodlums posing as students since we ended the single uniform policy of Mr Aregbesola.

3) Improved and efficient governance structure.
We have reformed the governance structure of our schools by creatively introducing the Board of Governors (BOG) for each and every school. The BOG has as members, the principal of the school, representatives of old students, teachers, community, parents forum, clergy and former principals of the school.
Together they all collaborate to assist the principals to manage the schools and deliver qualitative education promised by Gov Oyetola.
Involving old students in school governance has led to a cumulative injection of over 3 billion naira by old students associations across the length and breadth of the state.

4) Recruitment of teachers: This administration has recruited 1000 teachers and will soon conclude the recruitment of additional 1500 sound teachers majority of whom are science , English and mathematics teachers.

5) Motivation of demoralized teaching force: It was an open secret that teachers in Osun State completely lost their zeal and enthusiasm for the job as a result of irregular and half salary payment as well as non-payment of retirement benefits before this administration came on board.
Salaries are now paid regularly and fully . Payment of Retirement benefits has improved greatly and our teachers are teaching and smiling again.

6) Construction and renovation of schools physical infrastructures: This administration has also built new blocks of classrooms in over 100 schools and renovated blocks of classrooms in several others

7) Reintroduction of guidance and counseling into our school system:
We recognize the influx of negative foreign cultures and the huge distractions that our students are exposed to through the internet and global television channels, hence, we brought back counselors into our schools to assist our young minds to navigate the atrocious terrain of life during adolescence. This is already yielding tremendous results.

8) Introduction of ICT into education management: We have successfully put together an Education Management Information System (EMIS) that is ready for inauguration. Each school has a website and communication and management of each school is real time now.

9) Establishment of Osun State Examinations Board: This is to standardize our internal examinations and ensure that our students are used to standard examinations and sufficiently confident to face external examinations.

10) Introduction of Placement Examinations (Common Entrance) into JS1 and SS1: As part of our efforts to ensure that our students are not half baked and can cope easily with their current level, we introduced common entrance examinations to ensure that only teachable students are admitted into our junior and senior secondary schools respectively.

11). Reorganization and Retooling of the Ministry of Education: To ensure efficient service delivery, we have reorganized the Ministry of Education and have bought 7 hilux vehicles for a Ministry that did not have even a bicycle when we came on board. Plans are in the pipeline to purchase vehicles for the inspectorate department for effective supervision of teachers in all schools. Already, we have uncovered and eliminated several rackets in the system.
12) As part of our psychosocial achievements, we have eliminated controversies and discontents among stakeholders that were occasioned by the introduction of a strange 4-5-3-4 system of education by the former governor. We have since gone back to 6-3-3-4 system and aligned with the other states of the federation, thus ending the resistance/agitation of teachers and other stakeholders.
We shall continue to rebuild Osun education and ensure that we are not distracted by a self glorification that is far from the reality of what this administration inherited.
We have stabilized the system and we are confident that objective practitioners in the system appreciate our modest but sustainable contribution that has not mortgaged the future of generations yet unborn and has not put them in humongous debt.”


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