Founder Of Inoyo Toro Foundation Suggests Ways To Improve Educational System In AK
In line with the objective of the two-day education summit which was to provide a platform for stakeholders in the education sector to chart a course for the educational system in Akwa Ibom, the founder of the Inoyo Toro Foundation has stressed the need for an independent committee of experts to study the existing educational policy of the state and align it with current realities.
Mr Udom Inoyo who gave the suggestion recently at the two-day education summit and exhibitions on the theme, Human Capacity Development for Sustainable Transformation of Persons and Society held at Mboho Mkparawa Ibibio Hall, Udo Udoma Avenue, Uyo, said, this was necessary in this era of technology.
Inoyo who was one of the summit partners also opined that there is need for the state to recruit, develop, reward, and retain effective teachers and principals, saying, "let's adopt the finish model of attracting the best and brightest to the education sector and paying them very well."
According to him, there is need to create a significant financial support for teacher education, professional development, and supportive working conditions.
Inoyo who is the vice chairman, ExxonMobil Plc further suggested that there must be an education policy that incentivizes attendance of public schools with boarding facilities.
He noted that though the state recognizes the West African Examination Council (WAEC) and the National Examination Council (NECO) examinations, there is need to establish an authentic baseline beyond WAEC examinations by presenting students of Akwa Ibom public schools to participate and excel in internationally known educational ratings, especially the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA).
Inoyo recalled that in the last 12 years, himself and his wife, alongside many well-meaning professionals from the state have invested resources to help complement government efforts in improving standards in the education sector, with special focus on teachers.
According to him, though it has been a rewarding experience, the fact remains that the rot is much and requires a lot of work to be done.
The vice chairman of ExxonMobil Plc noted that in the process of complementing government efforts in improving standards in the education sector, they have come across many diligent teachers, principals and students who are held back by the system - poor teacher/student ratio, description facilities and officials who are unhelpful because they want to look good and therefore must be politically correct always.
Inoyo recalled that in 2008 the Inoyo Toro Foundation in collaboration with Accenture ran a capacity development programme for award winning teachers during which a certain commissioner for education then, announced to the audience that government had purchased laptops for all secondary school teachers and that the ones in the programme would have theirs delivered within two weeks, adding that, no laptop has been delivered after 10 years.
He appreciated governor Udom Emmanuel for convoking the education summit which he was certain will throw up practical solutions to the challenges in the education sector, describing him as one who wants to fix the rot in the sector.
Inoyo expressed optimism that as a thorough bred professional, Emmanuel will personally supervise the implementation of the summit outcome.
Delivering a lecture on the topic, knowledge as a bedrock for entrepreneurship, job creation and wealth creation, the chief human resources officer, Dangote Worldwide, Lagos, Mr Usen Udoh, observed that some families rely on the entrepreneurial skills of their forebears and take after them, even as entrepreneurship are taught in schools.
Udoh who is an active participant in the Inoyo Toro Foundation Mentorship Scheme over the years, noted that Akwa Ibom people have become so educated, acquiring degrees and accolades, all round, but lost mindfulness which is one of the key factors in successful entrepreneurship.
He recommended that entrepreneurship should be included in all standards of education in the state beginning from the primary school level.
Udoh also advocated for the complete restructuring of the educational system by changing the entire curriculum, turning it upside down and restructuring it, while also urging government to come up with a road map for the education sector.
The cardinal objective of the two-day event was to provide a platform for teachers, principals, policy makers, education officials, parents and students to consider how to move the educational system closer to that elusive ideal, - giving every Akwa Ibom child an equal chance to succeed while networking, share ideas and collaborating on how to address localized issues and concerns.