The Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, has said his government will continue to prioritize investment in the state’s education sector so as to sustain the progress recorded by his administration in the sector.
Obaseki gave the assurance while addressing members of the newly elected state chapter of the Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT), who were on a courtesy visit at the Government House, Benin City.
The governor, who assured his administration’s commitment to the welfare of teachers in the state, said the government is reviewing strategies to improve adult education and strengthen security in schools across the state.
According to him, “I want us to work together to align our educational policies. There is a whole generation who are not privileged as some of those you are teaching now to receive the kind of quality education you are impacting on the children under your care. What do we do about adult education?
“Is it possible to bring them back to evening or weekend classes so that we can train them? Considering the role of adult education, should we just leave them like that?” He queried.
On strengthening security in schools, Obaseki stated, “It is only a good parent and teacher that will be concerned about the security of students in schools.
“Those are the issues that are bothering us now. So, we are going to try to do as much as we can under our school improvement programmes to fence as many of our schools and those ones that we can’t fence, we will not only use the constabularies, we will now include the vigilantes to help secure the schools.”
The governor, who noted that his administration has recorded significant progress in the education sector in the past five years said, “You cannot imagine how happy I am because when I cast my mind back to four, five years ago, this is not the kind of reception I normally have with members of trade unions. For me, we have made a lot of progress.”
He continued, “Today, we understand each other; we are on the same page, we are now partners. We are all striving to achieve the same goals. I am so glad that our conversation today is not about salary payments, pension for your retired colleagues, or leave allowance.
“We have streamlined all of these; we are now talking about the children under your care. What more can a leader ask for? I now see you as my real partners and therefore, I will treat you as such.”
“The Commissioner for Education is organizing a series of workshops to bring all of us together to discuss the future of our education. Our priority as a state is education, because that’s the foundation that everything else rests on,” Obaseki noted.
“We are working things out to make sure that we start a lot of renovations and improvements of our schools,” he assured.
Earlier, the state Chairman of NUT, Mr. Bernard Ajobiewe, commended the governor for prompt payment of salaries to all the workers in the state’s civil and public service, urging increased partnership between the government and teachers to guarantee the provision of quality education to students in the state.