The Presidential Committee on NEEDS assessment of Nigerian Public Polytechnics and Colleges of Education inaugurated by President Goodluck Jonathan has finally submitted the report of their findings.
The committee, in its report recommended the removal of dichotomy between Higher National Diploma, HND, and the university first degrees. The committee, also advised that the curriculum of polytechnics should be regularly reviewed to address changes in industry and the demand in society.
Director, Tertiary Education, Federal Ministry of Education, and Chairperson of the committee, Mrs. Hindatu Abdullahi, said part of the recommendations was that the National Board for Technical Education, NBTE and National Universities Commission, NUC, should develop standards for the award of Bachelor of Technology, B.Tech, by the nation’s polytechnics.
“The National Commission for Colleges of Education, NCCE, should ensure that all colleges of education running degree programmes should have not less than 60 per cent Ph.D holders of the total academic staff strength for each of the degree courses; and provision of Centres for Educational Technology, CET, with all the requisite facilities,” Mrs. Abdullahi stated.
The report of the committee also revealed that in the schools visited, “all categories of physical facilities are grossly inadequate, while available ones are utiliaed beyond installed capacity.
“Some vital learning resources are completely unavailable; the enrolment policy of 60:40 ratio for Science and Arts-based courses in Colleges of Education and 70:30 in favour of Science/Technology and Arts/Social Sciences in polytechnics are not implemented.
“In some institutions, the teacher-student ratio is low; most of the institutions do not have on-campus hostels, while the available ones are overcrowded, poorly lit and not adequately ventilated, and in a state of disrepair; municipal facilities are inadequate and in poor condition.
“Based on these findings, the following recommendations cut across the polytechnics and colleges of education: Completion of abandoned and on-going projects; rehabilitation and upgrading of facilities, infrastructures that are in the state of disrepair; provision and rehabilitation of students through public-private partnership.
“Recruitment of qualified teachers and training/re-training of personnel; provision and upgrading of internet connectivity, tele-communication and information services; provision of essential learning resources/materials; all polytechnics and colleges should be linked to the National Power Grid and provide alternative/support of power in libraries, laboratories, workshops and studios; review of the laws establishing these institutions; the following recommendations are specific to polytechnics,” the report stressed.
Abdullahi informed that the report would assist the government in repositioning the institutions for effective and efficient teaching, learning research and community services, in line the federal government’s transformation agenda and global best practices.