THE immediate past deputy vice chancellor (Academics) of the University of Ilorin, Kwara State, Professor Nike Sidiqat Ijaiya, has called on the Federal Government to evolve an ICT-driven policy framework for colleges and faculties of education in Nigeria for the enhancement of teacher education.
Professor Ijaiya who made this call recently while delivering the Convocation Lecture at the 18th combined convocation ceremony of the Kwara State College of Education, Ilorin, identified lack of proper ICT education in most colleges and faculties of education as one of the major factors responsible for the dwindling status of higher education in Nigeria.
She, therefore, urged government to prioritise training and retraining of teachers and teacher educators as well as make adequate provision for necessary digital facilities to drive teacher education in line with what is obtainable in the 21st century.
Professor Ijaiya, whose lecture was entitled ‘Teacher Education in the 21st Century: Whither Nigeria’s Colleges of Education?’ said that the earlier the country’s policy makers come up with a new robust ICT-driven action plan on teacher education the better for the future of the country.
“Government must appreciate more the enormity of the ICT challenge to education and the economy of the next generation and connect it to training and re-training of teachers, teacher educators, as well as provision of necessary digital facilities while international aids could be sought to address the aspects of funding and training,” she noted.
She also called on proprietors of the colleges of education in Nigeria to re-double their efforts at funding the institutions by increasing the budgetary allocation, adding that teacher training is too important to be commercialised.
She also recommended that NCE candidates should be given priority in the admission to faculties of education in universities.
Professor Ijaiya called on lecturers to rise to the occasion as learning in the 21st century is mostly unconventional, while college management and lecturers should demand discipline from their students.
Earlier in his welcome address, the provost of the college, Dr Abdulraheem Yusuf, described the role of teacher education as very essential in the human educational make-up, saying that it was this significance that earned the colleges the position of being the minimal prerequisite in our educational industry.
He expressed dissatisfaction that colleges over the years have been denied their right place they belong, which he said resulted into the fading away of their quality.