Lagos govt unveils plans to upgrade alternative school infrastructure, skills centres to world-class standards

•Proposes more schools to reintegrate dropouts

Lagos State government has unveiled plans to fully rehabilitate its Alternative High School for Girls located in Agboju, in Amuwo-Odofin Local Government Area and other similar schools across the state, even as it also planned to upgrade to world standards the skills acquisition facilities in the state.

The Special Adviser to Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu on Education, Barrister Tokunbo Wahab, disclosed this while speaking with newsmen in his office, saying the proposed upgrade was aimed at attracting and reintegrating school dropouts as well as those who may have shunned education earlier in life.

Wahab, who said the step was in demonstration of the state government’s commitment to the provision of qualitative education in all strata of the society, maintained that the fast-growing rate of the state’s population required a holistic educational approach that would prioritize the development of both formal and informal education to achieve a mass literacy goal for development.

The Special Adviser also hinted that the government might, in future, consider a plan to build more alternative schools across the state for people, who may have dropped out of school due to early pregnancy, child trafficking, lack of parental care or other factors, to have an opportunity to return to school for further education.

He explained that the initiative would empower the beneficiaries socially and economically to enable them to contribute to the development of society and play a more functional role as responsible citizens.

Wahab, while giving credit to Senator Oluremi Tinubu, wife of the former governor of the state, for championing the cause for an alternative school system in the state, explained that the idea of the Alternative High School for Girls located in Agboju was conceived by the New Era Foundation during the tenure of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu as governor of Lagos State.

According to him, the school was set up to provide education for female dropouts and an opportunity to acquire vocational skills for self-reliance while they also continue formal learning.

“New Era Foundation (NEF) at that time proposed the idea for the establishment of the Alternative High School for Girls in Agboju to the Ministry of Education, under the Office of the Special Adviser on Education, which was subsequently adopted by the state government after careful, painstaking appraisal of its objectives and relevance within the framework of the socio-economic peculiarities of the state,” he recalled.

The governor’s aide, while justifying the reason for the state government’s continued investment in both formal and informal education, emphasized that mass education had become very compelling in Lagos due to its status as the third-largest Megacity in the world, as well as the economic hub of sub-Saharan Africa, characterized by an ever-increasing population.

This was as he noted that both formal and informal education remained the only panacea with which the government could enlighten and empower its teeming population for the socio-economic and political development of the state.

“The administration of Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, in line with the National Policy on Education, has remained committed to the provision of qualitative and quantitative education to the people of the state.

“This is realizable through effective and efficient implementation of education and technology as an important pillar of the state government’s development agenda, of which the development of both formal and informal education remains crucial,” Wahab stated.

Meanwhile, the Special Adviser to Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu on Education, Barrister Tokunbo Wahab, assured that his office would continue to initiate and implement policies to promote the growth of both formal and informal education in the state, even as he disclosed that plans were afoot to present a proposal before the State Executive Council and the House of Assembly for the establishment of at least one Alternative School in each of the six Administrative Divisions of Lagos State to upscale the growth of education in the state.

The Permanent Secretary, OSAE, Mr Adeniran Kasali, in his welcome address, hinted that the state government in demonstration of its readiness to the development of Alternative School for Girls located in Agboju had constituted the Governing Board to direct the affairs of the school.

According to him, the newly inaugurated Governing Board include; The Special Adviser on Education, Barrister Tokunbo Wahab; OSAE Permanent Secretary, Mr Adeniran Kasali; Director Inspection and Monitoring, Mrs Omoloye Yemisi; OSAE Director of Finances and Accounts, Alhaja Fausat Akinsola; the Principal of the School, Mrs Abimbola Ogunye; a Director representing Agency for Mass Education, Mrs Seriki Olayemi; another Director, representing Education District V, Mrs Yekini Elizabeth and finally, teaching staff from the school, Mrs Aina Mary Olufunke.

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Lagos govt unveils plans to upgrade alternative school infrastructure, skills centres to world-class standards

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