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FG, KOICA to establish ‘Smart School’ centre in Bauchi – Official

By Ayinde Olaide

The Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC), says the commission is set to establish Smart Schools Centre in Bauchi State.

Alhaji Bashir Galadanci, Information Communication Technology (ICT) consultant on Smart Schools to UBEC, made this `known in Bauchi on Friday when members of UBEC and Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA), paid a courtesy visit to the Bauchi State governor, Bala Mohammed in Bauchi.

Galadanci said that the Federal Government was working in collaboration with KOICA, which had already established a Nigeria-Korean Model School in Abuja and would soon  supply the school with necessary ICT equipment and facilities.

He said that Bauchi State had been selected to represent the North East Geo-political zone, hence the establishment of the school in the state.

The ICT consultant revealed that the Federal Government, through UBEC had concluded plans to establish seven zonal smart schools in different parts of the country.

He said that every student and teacher would be making use of a highly powered internet tablet instead of blackboard.

Galadanci said that the purpose of establishing the smart school was part of the Federal Government’s resolve to take education to the next level.

“Smart schools are the way that almost all countries, especially the advanced ones are adopting for Information and Communication Technology to revolutionise their countries and they are completely changing the way children are being educated.

“This is why the UBEC feels that it is necessary to establish a few smart schools. First, seven, then another 13 and hopefully, there will be one smart school in every state of the federation,” he said.

He said that smart education was about using the latest technologies such as IT infrastructure with a very high speed internet and other equipment all the way to smart boards, tablets and laptops.

Galadanci said that once the schools were established, the current sorry state of public schools would give way to modern and very effective smart schools where school children would get the right type of education.

“We are living increasingly in a globalised world where our children need to compete not only with their colleagues in Nigeria but with other children all over the world.

“The only way we can compete is to upgrade our educational system to be able to offer smart and modern education as it’s been offered in all parts of the world,” the ICT consultant said.

Earlier, the governor said that his administration wanted to open new frontiers in education and as such had subscribed to the initiative.

He said that the state had already keyed into digital education by budgeting N400 million for it.

“Education is the key and we must take the bull by the horns if we are going to succeed. Today, education is an area where we have made a lot of pleasant progress.

“We are ready to work with you, already, we have taken the initiative, we have budgeted about N400 million for digital education and we have developed a framework,” he said.

Mohammed appreciated the Federal Government, UBEC and KOICA for the initiative, saying “it is very difficult to see Federal Government or state governments starting a project within a span of one year and it is coming to fruition in no time.’’

“This has shown that we are serious and we are ready to make ourselves available to the Federal Government as partners in progress and play by the game,” he said.

Earlier, Mr Woochang Chan, the Country Director of KOICA, said he observed that public schools were not digitised in Nigeria, adding that the establishment of the smart model school would greatly close the gap. (NAN)

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