Shettima Unveils Programme To Transform North East Schools

VP Shettima Off To America For US-Africa Business Summit

The federal government yesterday launched a multi-year Accelerated Senior Secondary Education Programme (ASSEP) targeted at overhauling school infrastructure, modernising curricula and integrating virtual learning technologies.

The initiative is a major policy drive to bridge the educational gap in the country, beginning from the North-East region.

Unveiling the initiative in Bauchi State, Vice President Kashim Shettima in a statement by his spokesman, Stanley Nkwocha,  said the comprehensive, phased programme aims to rapidly upgrade secondary education across three core pillars, including enhancing access to tertiary institutions, imparting market-relevant skills, and upskilling teachers to stay ahead of disruptive innovations like artificial intelligence.

Shettima emphasised that the initiative directly addresses President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s vision to confront the North-East’s multifaceted challenges – from the security crisis to stagnant human capital outcomes.

According to him, each person’s current position is due to the privilege of education made possible by someone along the way who provided an environment for learning and incentives to continue, a tradition he said must not be broken.

In his address titled, “Bridging the Gap: Transforming Education in the North-East,” the vice president declared that they had assembled to undertake the noble mission of safeguarding the educational opportunities that had empowered successive generations to achieve their current standing.

Shettima said the vast disparity in quality of life between those who embrace education and those who do not serve is a glaring and lasting reminder of the profound benefits education provides.

Stating that surveys are needed to highlight this difference, as it is evident across all facets of society, Shettima pointed out that the North-East sub-region, in particular, had been a victim of the collective failure to implement uniform policies driving school enrolment.

This, he added, is compounded by the persistent cultural aversion to formal education among various communities in the region.

“We occupy bottom-most positions in education indices, reflective of our inability to enforce uniform policies on school enrolment amid persistent cultural pushback in some communities,” he said.

While primary education “provides the foundational interest in Western education,” the Vice President said “it is secondary education that serves as the critical bridge between students and their paths to becoming self-reliant and relevant in modern society.”

Under ASSEP’s umbrella, the government will stimulate high-quality instruction, incentivise STEM achievement, revamp dilapidated classrooms to modern specifications, and cultivate an enriching academic environment through innovations like quiz competitions, exam coaching camps and intensive teacher training.

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