Traditionally, educators are often reluctant to introduce radical changes. However, when the need arises, they advocate a new approach by trying something different that might yield better learning.
So it was at this year’s International Day of Education, Faculty of Education, University of Ibadan (UI), Ibadan, Oyo State. Discussants and policymakers at the one-day symposium underscored the fact that Nigeria’s education system “is problematic.”
They said it was not designed for emergent needs of the 21st century, “for the skills learners acquire in school are not what they need to function effectively in the society, as schooling is happening but not enough learning is taking place.”
Participants included Professors Pai Obanya, Clement Kolawole, Onuka, K.O. Ojokheta, Esther Oduolowu and Adenike Emeke, all of UI. Others were Dr. Nureni Adeniran, chairman of Oyo SUBEB, and Mrs. Aminat Atere, permanent secretary, Ministry of Education, Oyo State.
They noted that 16 of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) revolved round Goal Four, which focuses on education. They also asserted that: “SDGs are the blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future, as they address global challenges (poverty, inequality, climate change, environmental degradation, prosperity, peace and justice).
“They ensure that no one is left behind. Learners who were in school before COVID-19 pandemic and dropped out must be recovered, for the number of out-of-school children is still at an alarming rate.”
On the school-level ingredients for learning, the discussants called for prepared learners, as pupils should be school-ready, as well as effective teaching and pedagogy (change in the methodologies of teaching.)
Other areas are technological advancements, effective leadership and government willpower to improve learning and investing in teachers’ training and retraining, school resources and, curriculum updating, among others.