Out-of -School Children’s Centre, others: Fagge leads team to Education Minister, seeks approval

The Provost, Federal College of Education, FCE,  (Technical) Bichi, Kano, Professor Bashir Muhammad Fagge, mni  has led a delegation to the Minister of Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu,  in Abuja.

The  delegation  was received by the Permanent Secretary, Arch. Sonny Ochono  on behalf of the Minister on Tuesday October 27, 2020.

In his address on the occasion, Fagge   presented a cocktail of requests  for the intervention of the Minister towards  achieving some innovative projects, and to address some ecological challenges confronting the College.

The list of requests include a call on the minister to approve  the establishment of  “International Center for the Studies of Out-of –School Children Phenomenon (ICSOSCP) in FCET Bichi, Kano State in collaboration with both local and international stakeholders.”

Also, he  urged the minister to  “Intervene with Federal Ministry of Works and Housing and Ecological Trust Fund to endorse the College request for 10km road network and control of erosion and burrow pits in the Permanent Site, respectively.

Fagge also wants the minister to “Approve collaboration for the College, NCCE and NBTE for the award of certificates in Entrepreneurship and Skills Acquisitions.

The provost equally called on the minister to “Facilitate the introduction of NCE Community Health and Paramedics in Colleges of Education with the approval of National Council on Education.”

Providing the background to the prayers earlier,  the Provost said, “some part of the Permanent Site was exposed to excavation by the locals over a long period of time thereby creating burrow pits which poses both ecological and security challenges. The erosion affected area was approximated at 4 hectares with a depth of 10metres. The area is beyond the capability of the College to address using Capital allocation. This necessitated the request for intervention of both the Federal Ministry of Works and Housing and Ecological Trust Fund through the Honourable Minister of Education.

He said “The College engaged experts to design roads and drainages in the Permanent site. The exercise was long completed. The challenge remains the funds for the Construction of the road network and drainages. It is gladdening to inform the Honourable Minister of Education that the Federal Ministry of Works and Housing through Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) programme has recently completed a 1km dual carriage asphalted road from the main gate to administrative block of the College. However, the remaining 9km road network is awaiting further intervention. He said pictures of soil and water erosion as well as drainage and the proposed 10km roads network are attached for  the minister’s action).

Speaking on the menace of  out of school  children in Nigeria, Fagge  said, “The Honourable Minister may wish to recall the clarion calls from different quota on the need to address the phenomenon of Out-of –School Children in the Country. In line with the theme of National Council for Education (NEC) and the Honourable Minister’s agenda of “Eradicating Out-of –School Children Phenomenon: a tool for the achievement of Education 2030 Agenda” the College proposes the establishment of ICSOSCP in the College. The Center will aim to warehouse and coordinate studies on Out-of School Children in Nigeria in particular and Sub-Saharan Africa in general.

Continuing, he said “The reconnaissance survey Committee of the College for the establishment of the Center highlighted the suitability of the Center in a College of Education Technical in Northwest zone of Nigeria. Similarly, the Committee suggested seeking the assistance of Honourable Minister in this light and collaboration of both local (Danjuma Foundation, Dangote foundation and Bua Group of Companies) and international stakeholders (UNESCO, UNICEF, McAthur Foundation, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation etc) for the realization of this very important goal. In view of the aforementioned, the College is soliciting for the Honourable Minister’s approval for the establishment of ICSOSCP in the College.

The provost also elaborated on the Entrepreneurship and Skills Acquisition  matter, saying, “The Honourable Minister is aware that Entrepreneurship and Skills Acquisition are the duo capable of addressing youth unemployment and by extension youth restiveness.

He disclosed that, “The College in its efforts to align itself with the vision and mission of the present administration lobbied the intervention of the Kano State Governor and members of the National Assembly for the Construction and furnishing of 100-capacity Entrepreneurship and Skills Acquisition Centers in four Local Government Areas in the State.

“However, the mandate of the College and National Commission for Colleges of Education (NCCE) is to award National Certificate in Education (NCE). In order to certify Technical, Vocational and Entrepreneurship Skills a collaboration with National Board for Technical Education (NBTE) is required. Therefore, we kindly seek the intervention of the Honourable Minister to foster Collaboration with NBTE for the award of Certificate in the Entrepreneurship and Skills Acquisition by the College.

On the issue of  of NCE Community Health and Paramedics in the Curriculum of Colleges of Education, Fagge explained, that  “It is acknowledged that Nigeria has the largest stock of Human Resource for Health (HRH) in Africa. However, it has a very low density of other workers in health such as paramedics and sanitation officers. The primary challenge therefore, is inadequate training and distribution of health workers and their ultimate concentration in the urban areas.

“An updated data in 2017 by WHO on Nigeria reported that, as at 2014 Nigeria has population ratio of health worker to populace of 1:550 as against the 1:7 recommended figure.

“This is not a good index either for the attainment of the third sustainable development goal in 2030, or for the development of a healthy society with sound, positive mindset and attitudes towards health.

“Based on the above context, the need for nurturing health at the basic education level becomes paramount. Hence, the proposal for the introduction of NCE Community Health and Paramedics Programme in the curriculum of Colleges of Education. The proposal was recommended by both NCCE and Joint Consultative Committee on Education (JCCE). Currently, the proposal is awaiting the approval of National Council on Education (NCE) for implementation. We hereby seek the intervention of Honourable Minister for the facilitation of NCE approval,” the provost said.