Category Archives: Education

Education targets home managers, their kids and teenage learners in Enugu and the South East Region. It is also technology-driven.

UNN announces resumption dates for old students

The University of Nigeria Nsukka (UNN) announced new resumption dates for undergraduate and post graduate students, beginning from Monday 18 January.

University Registrar, Dr Chris Igbokwe, said today that the school will begin the concluding academic activities for the 2019/2020 session on January 18.

Post postgraduate students will resume on Monday 18 January while undergraduates would resume a week later on Monday, January 25.

Dr. Igbokwe said the decisions were approved by the University Senate at an emergency meeting.

The University Administration will insist on observance of Covid-19 protocol for returning staff and students, he said..

The protocol include the following:

  • “All Students must wear face masks and carry hand sanitizers before they will be allowed access to hostels, classrooms and any office in the university.
  • “Students are expected to utilize the handwashing materials provided in designated places in the University to wash their hands properly as they gain entry and depart various places.”

Post-UTME Screening Exercises

The University has also announced post-UTME admission guidelines for fresh students.

The Computer-based Screening exercise will start on Monday 18 January and end on Tuesday 26 January, as follows:

  • Monday, 18 January – Medicine and surgery (Cut off 180 to 288 and above)
  • Tuesday 19 January – Law & Business Administration (cut off 180 to 220 and above)
  • Wednesday, 20 January – Engineering, physical sciences and environmental studies (cut off 180 and above)
  • Thursday, 21 January – Health Sciences and Technology (cut off 180 – 234 and above)
  • Friday, 22 January – Pharmaceutical, Biological and Healtg Sciences & Technology (cut off 180 – 248 and above)
  • Saturday 23 January – Social sciences, Agricultural Sciences, Veterinary Medicine and Dentistry (cut off 180 and above)
  • Monday 25 January – Arts and Education (cut off 180 – 212 and above)
  • Tuesday 26 January – All Direct Entry candidates.

The venues for the screening exercises are:

  • Nnamdi Azikiwe Library (Digital Library), University of Nigeria, Nsukka; and
  • Centre for Distance and e-Learning, University of Nigeria, Nsukka.

UNN announces new resumption dates for undergraduate and post graduate students, beginning from Monday 18 January.

No Christmas, Easter holidays for Enugu pupils in new school year

There will be no traditional Christmas, Easter holidays for Enugu primary and secondary school students in the 2020/2021 Academic Year.

Instead, Enugu school owners will allow students a 2-week break for Christmas and another 5-day break for Easter.

Enugu State students are currently on a one-week holiday which began 27 November to end the 2019/2020 school session.

Students were allowed to resume schooling on 28 September, after the State Government lifted Covid-19 lockdown restrictions.

The new school year (2020/2021) begins this Monday, 7 December, and will run for 12 weeks, ending 12 February. The 2-week Christmas break in between ends on 6 January and classes resume the following day.

All schools in Enugu are expected to rapidly conclude the First Term school instructions on 12 February 2021.

The Ministry says there will be no traditional first term examinations for the students. In its place, schools are to use continuous assessment for promotions.

The schools will have a 12-week second term that runs between February and May 2021 and without a mid-term break, except for the 5-day break to observe Easter.

The final (third) term for the school year will run from 17 May to 13 August 2021, a total of 13 weeks.

These extraordinary measures were published in September to deal with worldwide disruption of life and business caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Permanent Secretary, Mrs. Nwanneka Onah, had warned that all schools operating in the State must strictly follow the Government Calendar.

“Any school, be it public, mission or private, found to be contravening the approved school calendar shall be appropriately sanctioned,” she had warned.

Click below to tweet story:

“No traditional Christmas, Easter holidays for Enugu primary and secondary school students in the 2020/2021 academic year, as State Government rallies to cover the Covid-19 disruption in school calendar.”

ESUT tags lecturers hoodlums, invites army to prevent chaos

Enugu State University (ESUT) tags lecturers as hoodlums in letter inviting the army to prevent disruption of first semester exams.

The letter, signed by the school’s registrar, alleged that “some hoodlums/lecturers” planned to disrupt exams beginning on 16 November 2020.

The Vice Chancellor however swiftly apologised for the tag which he described as “demeaning and unbecoming to associate academics with.”

The school had requested for a “crack team” of army personnel to manage a possible “breakdown of law and order.”

Some “heartless hoodlums/ lecturers,” the letter said, planned to unleash violence to “truncate smooth running” of the exams.

It expressed management’s worry that “… such dastardly acts may lead to sustenance of injury or loss of lives and property.”

Ag. Vice Chancellor Prof. Charles Eze has however distanced himself from characterisation of his academic colleagues as “hoodlums.”

He apologized because he believes it is “demeaning and unbecoming” to associate academics with the word ‘hoodlums’.

“Actually, we may have our differences on issues, but that does not warrant the use of such derogatory words on intellectuals.

“I am awfully sorry for the embarrassment which the said memo may have caused you as colleagues.

“I assure you that such will not happen again. Thanks for your understanding,” he concluded.

The apology, however, appears not to have extended to any plans to review the invitation to the army.

Enugu Metro learnt that the management is at loggerheads with local staff union (ASUU) over the decision to reopen the school.

Public universities have been shuttered and students sent home as the Academic Staff Union (ASUU) reopened yet another demand for improved work conditions.

Slug: ESUT tags lecturers as hoodlums in a letter to the army.

Enugu University of Education gets building from NGO

A US-based non-profit, Ihe Shikeaguma Foundation (ISF), is constructing a faculty building as donation to Enugu University of Education, Ihe.

The specialised education training University is a State Government project initiated by Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu State.

Construction works began on the project site at Ihe in Awgu LGA in May 2019.

ISF said in a statement that the donation is to appreciate Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi for his government’s decision to site a university in Enugu West Senatorial District.

The Governor is special guest at the Foundation’s ground breaking ceremony today Saturday, 3 October 2020 at the university site.

“We are excited by this development because it gives the right message of support to government – and to the hardworking Governor himself – especially at this time when resources to fund major projects are dwindling,” says Prince Emma Denchukwu.

Denchukwu, a Board members of ISF, said the US-based non-profit has members from all over the world, including Nigeria.

“Among ourselves, we have raised more than a quarter of what it costs to put up the building.

“We will rapidly complete the building as our people see actual construction going on and an enabling law in place,” he said.

“To complete the university on time is within our control and the Governor assures us that the University has come to stay,” he said.

Enugu University of Education is a signature project and legacy of the Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi administration. The governor was at Ihe on 9 April 2019 to lay the foundation for construction of the University’s main administrative building.

Enugu schools reopen 28-Sep with new 2-year calendar

Enugu schools reopen 28-Sep with State Government publishing a 2-year revised post-Covid19 school calendar to manage system disruption.

Schools in Enugu State resume on Monday 28 September 2020 and will be guided by a third term calendar published today.

State Education Commissioner, Prof. Uchenna Eze, directed all schools – public, private, and faith – to follow the government approved school calendar.

There will be nine weeks of instructions and examinations to round off the third term of 2019-2020 academic year.

Schools break for nine days, from 27 November and students return on Monday 7 December for the 2020-2021 academic year.

Education Permanent Secretary, Mrs. Nwanneka Onah, warned schools about not following the common calendar.

“Any school, be it public, mission or private, found to be contravening the approved school calendar shall be appropriately sanctioned,” she said.

In his statement, Commissioner Eze assured that arrangements are in place to safely reopen schools.

He told teachers to complement Enugu’s decision to reopen schools on 28-Sep by assisting to manage the approved Covid19 guidelines.

Eze said, for example that “no person will be allowed into any school without appropriate facemask or shield,” he said.

He also said that Primary Six and Junior Secondary Three pupils are not expected to resume since they have completed their studies.

Govt directed all Enugu Schools to shut down and send students home not later than Saturday 28 March 2020.

Schools were swiftly shut to shied citizens against COVID-19 pandemic which killed almost 10,000 persons worldwide at the time.

Yesterday 22 September, Enugu led the number of Covid19 cases reported nationwide by NCDC with 51 new cases.

The virus has so far attacked 57,613 Nigerians out of which 1,100 died since February 2020 when it made a landfall in Lagos.

Kids writing NECO and WASCE: Ways to protect against Covid

Ways to protect kids writing NECO and WASCE

The Federal Government on 30 July soft-pedaled on its original protest on students writing the 2020 WASCR.

Government now agrees that Nigerian students will join their counterparts in the region to write the West African School Certificate Examination (WASCE).

The examination begins in a fortnight.

The Ministry of Education also released a schedule for three examinations, including WASCE. Consequently, local examination bodies were mandated to submit a timetable for each test for approval.

To protect children writing WASCE and other examinations this year has therefore become an urgent need.

These examinations involve students in exit classes at both the junior and senior secondary school levels.

Most students will write the examination from home while others will be boarded as usual. However, regardless of their location, there are common things that parents and educators need to watch out for. This is to ensure that students return to their homes after the examinations, the same way that they left – safe and sound.

These mandatory precautions were extracted from published protocols by the responsible health authorities on safe schooling. We subsequently tweaked them to suit exit students in a confined environment outside their home for a period of four months (August to November 2020).

Ways to protect kids writing NECO and WASCE

Here are nine simple steps that parents, school administrators and examination supervisors can verify from each school to ensure that the children are safe as they write the examinations. Although developed by the American Academy of Paediatrics, they are nevertheless in line with NCDC protocols.

Conclusion

There are three parties that hold responsibility for safety of the children during this time. These are parents, school administrators and examination supervisors.

Snr. Students to write exit exams Aug-Nov 2020

Nigeria’s senior secondary students will write three exit exams between 17 Aug and 18 Nov 2020, federal officials announced yesterday.

All lschools in the country have been shut since March 2020 in the wake of the Coronovirus pandemic.

Federal authorities nearly got into a face-off with the regional examination body over this years WASCE when government said it is not keen on opening schools or writing the exit exams.

Commissioners for Education in the South West states however promptly indicated that they are willing to allow students in the zone write WASCE as scheduled.

Minister of State for Education, Hon. Chukwuemeka Nwajuiba, announced the various examination dates as follows:

  • West African Examinations Council, (WAEC-SSCE) starts on 17 of August
  • National Business and Technical Examination Board, (NABTEB) examinations start on 21 September to end 15 October
  • Senior Secondary School Certificate Examinations, (SSCE), conducted by NECO, starts on 5 October and ends on 18 November,
  • Basic Education Certificate Examinations (BECE) for JSS 3 (also conducted by NECO) starts on 24 August and ends on 7 September
  • National Common Entrance Examination for applicants to Unity Colleges (JSS1) is on Saturday, 17 October 2020.

The Minister said registration for the NECO (SSCE) exam is ongoing and will close on 10 September.

“There shall be no extension for the registration whatsoever,” he warned.

Government also directed that the National Board for Arabic and Islamic Studies (NBAIS) examination should begin on 23rd September and end by 17 October.

Government has therefore directed all the bodies to release their examination timetables within seven days from yesterday.

The heads of the various agencies managing the examinations were present, including the acting registrar of the West African Examinations Council.

They include JAMB Registrar, Prof. Is-haq Oloyede; Registar NECO, Prof. Godswill Obioma; NABTEB Registrar, Prof. Ifeoma Isiugo-Abanihe, NBAIS Register, Dr. Raji, and WAEC Acting Registrar, Dr. J.O. Oke.

Pupils and parents were asked to don face masks when they show up for the one-day National Common Entrance Examination conducted by NECO.

“It is compulsory for parents and pupils to wear face masks on the exam date, while also carrying along with them, alcohol-based sanitizers,” said Ben Bem Goong, Director of Press and Public Relations who released a statement at the end of the meeting.

Secondary schools open 4 Aug, for exit classes only

Senior secondary school students in Nigeria return to classes on Tuesday, 4 August to prepare for the West African School Certification Examinations (WASCE) which begins on 17 August.

Education managers nationwide met at a virtual conference and agreed on the date, a spokesperson from the Federal Ministry of Education said.

In attendance at the meeting were officials of the federal and state ministries of education, Nigerian Union of Teachers, (NUT), proprietors of private schools, and Chief Executives of examination bodies.

They agreed that exit classes resume immediately after the Sallah break to enable them prepare for the WAEC examinations beginning on 17 of August, 2020.

They also agreed to beg the federal government and philanthropists for assistance to schools across the country “to enable them fast track the preparations for safe reopening, as agreed.”

10 Surprises About Top-10 Scorers in JAMB 2020

Although the South East and South South regions together account for more than half of the UTME 2020 top scorers, none of the lads from those states wants to school in any university located in their region. What does this say about the reputation of schools in the two regions?

The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) has released the full results of the 2020 common entrance examinations for undergraduate studies in Nigerian universities. Known as Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME), the exam is now a computer-based standardized test for senior secondary students and other prospective undergraduates. UTME tests problem solving, critical thinking, and knowledge of concepts and principles for each subject.

Here are 10 fun facts about the top 10 performers in the 2020 test, derived from this table released by JAMP.:

  1. SURPRISE 1: There are 13 candidates in the top 10 because seven candidates were tied on points – four candidates scored 352, two candidates scored 355 and another two scored 359 each.
  2. SURPRISE 2: The average score for the candidates is 89 percent; the highest scorer, a girl, scored 91% while the lowest scored 88%
  3. SURPRISE 3:  All 13 top performers want to read Engineering courses with preferred courses being mechanical (5), electrical (4), Computer (2), civil (1) and Industrial Production engineering (1).
  4. SURPRISE 4: Only one candidate wants to be admitted in a university located in their state of origin.
  5. SURPRISE 5: The universities of first choice for the candidates are overwhelmingly located in South West (85%) while 15 percent are in the North Central region.
  6. SURPRISE 6: The preferred institutions are also overwhelmingly old generation universities, with a lone private university and another lone state university.
  7. SURPRISE 7: Anambra candidates grabbed the first two positions  but the State is tied with Ekiti on number of performers in the top 10. Both states were however beaten by Delta State which produced three top candidates. The remaining six other States each produced a candidate only.
  8. SURPRISE 8: Although the South East and South South regions together account for more than half of the top scorers, none of the lads from those states wants to school in any university located in their region.
  9. SURPRISE 9: Although there were more boys than girls in the top 10, two of the best three performers were girls.
  10. SURPRISE 10: No candidate who wrote the exam in an exam centre in the south east came close to the top 10.

FG warns WAEC over 2020 WASCE

The Federal Government is angry with the West African Examinations Council (WAEC) for unilaterally imposing a date to resume the suspended 2020 end-point examination for senior secondary school students.

Education Minister, Malam Adamu Adamu, said yesterday that government was blindsided by the regional examination body and vowed to resist the attempt to railroad the country’s students into writing WASCE in August.

“Yesterday we called on stakeholders who will tell us the situation and the way it should be done for it to be safe (to write the examination). While the meeting was going on, WAEC announced that they are starting examinations.

“Let’s see who they are going to start with,” he said in annoyance.

The Minister took the position that it is better that Nigerian students lose an academic year than to expose them to the Covid-19 virus currently devastating the world.

He asked State Governments that have announced school resumption dates to reconsider the decision.

“I appeal to them. I think it is not safe. I feel responsible for all children, not just those who are in federal government-controlled schools. Please let’s save our children from this.

“One infected child is enough to infect a whole class. When they close from class they go into the dormitory; this is not the right time to open schools.

The Minister who spoke to journalists after a virtual meeting of the federal cabinet said his minister of State was misquoted on school resumption date.


Speaking on the effect the decision to keep schools closed could have on final year secondary school students, due to write the WAEC, Adamu said Nigeria would not open the schools yet, not even for the WAEC, which is a regionally control programme.

He, however debunked an earlier report, which claimed that the Minister of State for Education, Hon. Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, announced August 4, 2020, as resumption date for schools, saying the Minister was misquoted.

“I don’t know whether you journalists are misquoting the Minister of State for Education or maybe quoting what WAEC said and made it into a story.

“Schools under the supervision of the Federal Ministry of Education will not be opened on August 4 or anytime soon.

“Our schools will only open when we believe it’s safe for our children and that is when the situation is right, not when the incidence of the infection is going up in the nation.

“I just want to make it clear. We will not open soon for examination or for any reason, unless it is safe for our children, even WAEC.

“WAEC will not determine for us what we do. Schools will remain closed,” he said with finality.

Our Children’s Lives Matter

In this thoughtful entry, IKELE EJIKE laments, and shows us how it is that succeeding generations of privileged Nigerians have been recklessly drawing on the savings accounts of our children to service the greed of their various moments in time.

By Ikele Ejike

I shall begin with what I know. In Igbo cosmology, emphasis is almost always on tomorrow; not yesterday or even today, much as the events of the past are allowed to shape future calculations among the people. An Igbo man aspires to greatness within his natural and social circumferences. If, however, greatness fails to come in spite of genuine efforts, he removes hope from himself and places it on his children. He then prays for his children to take life a notch higher than he has done.

The fad today is for some delinquent adults, including persons who had and still have opportunity to make a difference, to congregate under old students associations and pontificate about fallen standards in the school system. And I ask; who caused the standards to fall?

This is why, among the Igbos, ‘may you live a better life than your father’ is a standard prayer to an aspiring young man. It is accepted that the totality of a man’s life must come across as an improvement on the life that his father lived. By that rating, the opposite is somehow adjudged less than a fulfilled life. On the social scale, greater honour tends to go in the direction of he who improves on his father’s life than he who stands tall in the shadow of his father.

I must add, however, that this does not replace the responsibility of the passing generation. If anything, the performance of the succeeding generation is a direct consequence of what the preceding generation did with its time. And this is the kernel of my outing today.

In Nigeria, the subsisting generation operates as if time will end with it. We so recklessly draw on the savings accounts of our children to service the greed of the moment. That is the reason the contractor feels no shame colluding with officials to circumvent the building of a classroom block for which money had been released to him. When this happens across board, a situation arises where children attend worse schools than their parents in spite of the relative expansion in time, space and all other indices of human progression.

The fad today is for some delinquent adults, including persons who had and still have opportunity to make a difference, to congregate under old students associations and pontificate about fallen standards in the school system. And I ask; who caused the standards to fall? Is it the helpless children who were born into it and have been forced to swallow what is available or parents who decided to live better lives than their children? There was a time when universities in this country were among the best in the Common Wealth. In fact, the University College Hospital (UCH), Ibadan, was rated the 7th best health facility in the Common Wealth, which included Britain, Canada, Australia and India. What then happened that, today, no Nigerian university is among Africa’s top 10, how much more the Commonwealth?

I return to the Igbo cosmology. The land tenure system is a highly entrenched practice of inheritance among the people, such that the available land and its ownership structure is a product of systematic transmission of inheritance rights across generations. This, I hope is largely the practice everywhere in Africa. For instance, what I call my ancestral land in Ukawu is traceable to Amankpuma in Onicha LGA of Ebonyi State, the starting point of the Ukawu genealogy. I am seventh along the genealogy, yet my tiny place is assured because the generations ahead of me did nothing to obliterate the transmission of inheritance rights to the generations behind.

Even so, the conditions are fast changing and I cannot say for sure if the transmission shall continue for too long, as kindred detach from communal into self-feudalism. In other words, as excessive individualism erases every sense of common good, the tradition of ‘from father to son’ is dissolving even in traditional societies. We attack exhaustible resources as if they are renewable and in so doing we eat up the unborn generations. Today, there is a new occupation called sand dredging and mining in some communities in Ebonyi state. Every person of average resources fabricates a dredger dumps into a stream to mine sand and other solid minerals. Everywhere is a sand beach and mining site.

It is good business and government is turning a blind eye after collecting rent and revenues from operators. These people carry on as if they also have capacity to regenerate the environment and bring the intriguing network of flowing streams and rivulets to baseline conditions. The environment is under massive abusive and coupled with wide-spread seismic activities in the area, I fear what will be left of the Ebonyi state in another 50 years.
There is simply no control on consumption. We chop and quench literally and then hope for some miraculous recovery of what has been eaten when tomorrow comes. Better tomorrow is not a guess work or some scene in Arabian movie that gets established by mere wish. It is a product of rational thinking and decision. It follows the same principle of investment which, simply put, is denial of consumption for the moment to create activities for bigger and more sustainable yield in the future.

Last week, youths came out protesting the current hardship in the country. They said the old generation should be blamed because mainly old people including the President have been in the commanding heights of the political economy. They spoke with statistics. Persons who built the Nigerian State and whom we address as founding fathers were in their 20s and 30s when they founded Nigeria. They actually wanted to know the task of nation building would get to them. No child revolts if he is well represented by the father. The impending youth revolt is a clear ‘no confidence vote’ on the old men and women that have been harvesting and do not have planting season in their farming calendar.

The story of Nigeria is also the story of unceasing conspiracies of an elite class to serve its purpose alone. They destroyed the rail so that their haulage business can thrive. They destroyed public electricity so that diesel and generator importation can continue. They truncated the refineries so that fuel importation and arising benefits of subsidy payments can go on. They destroyed tertiary education so that they can become successful proprietors of private universities. And they will foist on the nation a morbid political leadership so that they can be protected.

No investment is ever made for tomorrow. That is why our yesterday tends to be always better than our today just as our today, by the same measurement, will be better than our tomorrow. In other words, we are permanently on a retrogression mode. To me, the problem is more spiritual than otherwise. The starting point in Nigeria is to tell every man and woman that has opportunity to operate in the public space that a life lived to the benefit of others is much more fulfilling and meaningful than a life lived to the benefit of oneself. In Norway for instance. The Norwegian State oil company called Statoil (equivalent of our own NNPC) is a major operator in the North Sea. The other is the Anglo-Dutch oil company, Shell. A high ranking official of the Norwegian government said they, in Norway, understand that oil is a finite resource and as such proceeds from its exploitation are invested for the future generation and that the governing law allows the subsisting generation to spend on itself only 4% of the returns on investment. More or less, everything about the oil economy in Norway is saved for the future. The country as at 2017 has about $900 billion in Sovereign Wealth Fund even as fishing remains the prime occupation and foreign exchange earner.

Back home, we have nothing to give our children because the subsisting generation eats the next and it has been consistently so. Let politicians, civil servants, business people, militants and terrorists agree that life will continue after their activities. If we love and genuinely wish our children to live better than we are living, we should as a matter of duty cut down on our current obscene consumption and invest in our tomorrow. The Good Old Days! The unborn days could be better!

Ikele Ejike is a journalist and public affairs analyst