By Gabriel Dike


Arigbabu handing over the lecture to Prof. Lafiaji-Okuneye


The Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology, Ogun State, Prof. Adelaja Abayomi Arigbabu has canvassed for the conversion of colleges of education to universities of education to enhance the quality and training of teachers in the country.

Prof. Arigbabu made the suggestion of the maiden edition at the Lagos State University of Education (LASUED), Oto/ijanikin, Distinguished Lecture Series titled “Teachers’ Preparation for Nigerian Schools in Contemporary world”.

The lecture attracted stakeholders, which include the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Tertiary Education, Lagos State, Mr. Adeniran Kasali, Vice Chancellor, Lagos State University, Prof. Ibiyemi Olatunji-Bello, Deputy VC, Lagos State University of Science and Technology, Prof. Basirat Oladipupo, former VC at Tai Solarin University of Education, Ijagun, Ogun State, Prof. Kayode Oyesiku, principal officers of LASUED, staff unions, students union and directors from Ogun State Ministry of Science and Technology.

At the lecture, Vice Chancellor of LASUED, Prof. Bidemi Lafiaji-Okuneye identified one major challenge facing teachers as poor working conditions, which include low salaries, lack of job security and limited career advancement opportunities.

Arigbabu advocated for the need to transform excising colleges of education into full-fledged universities of education to address the gaps in teacher training and elevate the quality of education delivery.

According to him, specialized universities of education are indispensable in meeting the complex demands of modern education and ensuring that teachers are equipped with the skills and knowledge needed to excel in their profession.

Said he: “Specialized universities of education serve as central hubs for disseminating educational best practices and innovative teaching strategies.  They play a crucial role in guiding educational policy and proactive at regional and national levels.

“To fully realize their potentials, specialized universities of education must undergo continuous upgrades and enhancements. Theses include modernizing infrastructure, updating curricular to align with emerging educational trends and investing in faculty development programmes.

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Arigbabu suggested that each colleges of education to establish an affiliation with a nearby university through a well-structured arrangement that prioritize quality and standards.

The education commissioner stressed that the affiliation must allow the college to maintain its identity, especially concerning its primary mission of producing Nigeria Certificate in Education holders.

He said teachers’ preparation for Nigeria’s schools in the contemporary world requires a comprehensive and forward-thinking approach.

“Our classrooms reflect the rich tapestry of Nigerian societies, encompassing diverse languages, religious and socio-economic background. Therefore, teaching requires a healthy blend of content knowledge, instructional strategies and classroom management tactics, he noted.

The former VC of Tai Solarin University of Education stated that teacher preparation programmes must adapt to the technological advancement reshaping the way students learn.

Arigbabu added: “Overall investing in high-quality teacher education programmes is crucial for ensuring that educators are equipped to meet the complex challenges of the contemporary world and effectively educate and empower the next generation of learners.”

In her address, LASUED VC, Prof Lafiaji-Okuneye observed that many schools lack basic facilities such as classrooms, textbooks, and teaching aids, which impact the quality of education that teachers can provide to their students.

“Without access to essential resources, teachers struggle to deliver effective lessons and engage students in meaningful learning experiences.

“Many teachers in the country are not adequately remunerated for their works, leading to low morale and job dissatisfaction. Predictably, demotivated teachers are less likely to be effective educators,” she added.

The VC observed that acute shortage of teachers remains a crucial challenge facing Nigeira teachers while stressing that lack of job security, lack of career progression and numerous challenges discourage talented individual from pursuing a career in teaching, thus exacerbating the issue of teacher shortage in the country.

She described the timing of the lecturer as apt, adding, “by addressing these challenge, Nigeria can foster a more conducive environment for teaching and learning, ultimately leading to improved educational outcomes for students and a more prosperous future for our country.”

Representative of the Commissioner of Tertiary Education, Mr. Adeniran Kasali described the lecture as an avenue to profer solution to teachers’ preparation in the country.

Kasali, who is the permanent secretary of the ministry, said the speaker touched on some key programmes being implement by the Lagos State Government. He commended the VC for initiating the lecture.