Sunday, December 5, 2021

Digital education: Korean govt to spend $N10m on Nigerian primary, secondary schools

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Public Primary and Secondary Schools in Nigeria are set to access digital education courtesy of the collaboration between the Universal Basic Education Commission, UBEC, and the Korea International Corporation Agency, KOICA.

The Korean Ambassador to Nigeria, Kim Young-Chae disclosed this in his address of welcome at a ceremony for the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding, MoU, between the Universal Basic Education Commission, UBEC, and KOICA.

The MoU is for the improvement of Multimedia Learning Environment and Teaching Capacity Building for Nigerian Public Primary and Junior Secondary Schools.

The 5-year project from 2021-2025 will be fully funded by the Korean government through grant.

The project which will cost ten million dollars, will cover the provision of multimedia equipment, training of teachers and education officials.

Mr Kim remarked that the MoU signing ceremony was meaningful to the relationship between the Nigerian and Korean governments.

“Korea has resemblance with Nigeria in terms of education. How Korea developed in economy, I have to say, is thanks to education.

“We are educating the young people well in order to have international competitiveness.

“We want to share this kind of experience with Nigeria.

“Nigeria as the number one country in Africa can lead the development of the whole African continent.

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” So I congratulate you for signing this agreement,’’ Mr Kim said.

Nigeria’s Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, represented at the event by the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Education, Sunny Echono, expressed profound gratitude to the Korean government for the intervention.

Mr Adamu said the Nigerian/Korean Model Schools had stood as a symbol of excellence in the administration of basic education in the Federal Capital Territory.

The minister said the Nigerian government would offer the needed assistance to ensure a successful implementation of the project.

“I am grateful for the intervention by KOICA in the development of our new government master plan for Nigeria where KOICA donated more than 700 million dollars to assist the country to transit into a digital mode conducting government business by leveraging on technology.

“I remember that project has a training component and they also donated an entire training institution at our PSIM here in Abuja and thousands of Nigerians have been trained in e-governance and many civil servants have gone to Korea to get training in e-goverance.

“This is a logical progression from that and from the initial intervention of establishing model smart schools here in Nigeria to this intervention that is covering six different model schools.

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“Again it is part of our underlying transformation plan for our school system that we not only want to expand access but also improve teaching and learning in our schools and the key way of doing this is by improving teaching and learning materials.

“We are going to be transforming classroom experience for students from blackboards to digital boards, laptop, desktops devices and leveraging on technology to be able to see how students can have access to knowledge and curricular in new ways,’’ the minister said.

He, therefore, urged the states that would benefit from the intervention to make judicious use of the facilities to the betterment of the children in the states.

The Executive Secretary, UBEC, Dr Hamid Bobboyi commended KOICA for its assistance to Nigeria, saying the intervention had become a symbol of cooperation between both countries.

“I think it is a great achievement for the two countries to have this school in the FCT and for the school to discharge the responsibilities of showcasing issues of technology and qualitative delivery of education.

“In a kind of environment that is also motivating and stimulating to the children, we made a pledge to see how we can learn from the Korean model school and replicate it in other parts of the country.

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“And that commitment starting with the initiative that the Korean government has put made us to start thinking about those model schools.

“We feel that our children particularly those that are attending the public school sector must also be given an edge to compete with their pairs not only in Nigeria but other parts of the world.

“So the conception is not only based on the initial concept of the Korean model how do we replicate it and also how do we look at other aspects that we can add to ensure that we have a functional system that could deliver quantitative education in Nigeria.

“The Korean experience is a great lesson to Nigeria,” Mr Bobboyi said.

In his remark, the Country Director, KOICA, Woochan Chang said the project served as a second phase for the multimedia education project in the Nigeria.

The first phase (2017-2019) was aimed at improving the importation of multimedia tools in teaching and learning in the classroom.

“This project is beneficial to all Nigerians. Our budget is limited so we can only support six schools,” he said.

NAN

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