The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Mr. Femi Gbajabiamila, and the Minister for Special Duties and Intergovernmental Affairs, Senator George Akume, together with the National Lottery Trust Fund (NLTF), yesterday launched the “Back To School Jump -Start Project” .
The Digital Learning and Personal Sanitation Standardization Programme, The Guardian has learned, aims to instill good standards of computer-assisted education and hygiene in secondary school students.
The NLTF, which falls under the cabinet of the Minister, has also donated medical equipment to Gbaja Randle Mother and Childcare Hospital, General Hospital in Surulere, Lagos.
Speaking at Teslim Balogun Stadium, Lagos, Akume, who was represented by the fund’s executive secretary, Dr Bello Maigari, lamented that the initiative, which was conceived by the president and the NLTF, had been necessitated in the aftermath of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), where they discovered that public schools were the least suitable for new normal virtual learning.
Akume lamented that while elite private school students continued their education from home, their public school counterparts were at a huge disadvantage.
He said: “As the pandemic persisted, the need for urgent action to improve digital infrastructure in public schools became more evident.”
The program, which involves donating computers and empowering teachers, was funded by the NLTF to help increase learning capacity in public schools that are currently lagging behind due to insufficient access to digital learning infrastructure and other essential facilities, he added.
In his address, Gbajabiamila, who was represented by Ademorin Kuye, representing the Federal Constituency of Shomolu, said that the launch of the Jump-Start project, which aims to digitize the teaching and learning process and inculcate a culture of Basic hygiene in schools across the country was unique. .
His words: “The reason why the first stage of the Jump-Start project has been labeled as ‘No School Left Behind in Surulere’ is to address the widening educational disadvantage accentuated by COVID-19.
“As of today, global statistics put the death toll from COVID-19 at 6,089,484. However, statistics are scarce on how many children have dropped out of school due to the pandemic. , especially in developing economies. Even where learning appears to have continued uninterrupted, it is difficult to assess the educational disadvantages arising from an inadequate infrastructure for virtual teaching. For students in Nigerian public schools, the 2020 lockdown has been a huge academic setback. »