A former Vice President of the World Bank and one time Minister of Education, Oby Ezekwesili has said the use of archaic examination system is one of the major challenges facing the education sector.
Ezekwesili, who is also the Senior Economic Advisor, Open Society Foundation, stated this on Wednesday in Abuja while making a presentation at the 20th Nigerian Economic Summit.
In her presentation titled, ‘Education: For what purpose?’, the minister also listed poor relations between the federal and state education agencies, improper implementation of policies, communication gaps between operators in the sector and society; and corruption in the monitoring and policing system as other factors affecting the sector.
She said without an educated workforce, the country would not be productive. This, she added, would lead to a failure in industries.
She stressed the need to create an entrepreneurial class that would take away the burden of job creation from the government, adding that education should not be seen as a luxury, but a right.
The former minister also advocated a public-private partnership arrangement in the education sector,noting that this would help to bring about new ideas that would grow the economy
She said, “Government needs to create jobs, eradicate poverty, increase access to education and grow the economy through innovation using its human capital
“Industries need new ideas, creativity, innovation and people with skills, talent and entrepreneurship to produce goods and services sold for a profit in the market
“Partnerships between government monitoring and regulating the innovative institutions developing these skills and the employers will create a powerful network for centres of excellence.”
Also speaking at the summit, the acting Head, Department for International Development, Mr. Christian Rogg, called on all stakeholders to address challenges that prevent access, equity and inclusion of all school children.
He decried the continuous public underfunding of basic education in the country despite significant population increase.
For instance, he cited the lack of textbooks and instructional materials for students and teachers, inadequate classrooms, and ineffective teaching force as some of the supply side problems facing the sector. (Punch)