From Yahaya Audu, Bauchi
No fewer than 1320 schools in five local government Areas of Bauchi State are to benefit from the 2019 schools improvement project grants, a World Bank project.
Speaking shortly after presenting a cheque of five hundred thousand naira to each of the benefiting school, the state Governor, Senator Bala Abdulkadir Mohammed said, he will improve funding of education to tackle the menace of out of school children in the state.
He said his administration is already on the bent of restoring the lost glory of the standards in primary and secondary schools in line with the planned education reforms, through the provision of additional infrastructure, rehabilitations, training and retraining of teachers.
According to him, the present administration is redirecting the education sector to achieve the desired focus in order to harness the potentials of children in public schools, and assured his readiness towards providing equal education opportunity to all the citizens of the state.
Senator Bala Mohammed tasked the benefiting schools to use the disbursed funds to improve their schools infrastructures to ensure a better teaching and learning activities in schools in addition enhancing the learning process of the pupils.
The Governor appealed to relevant stakeholders to assist at supporting youths to apply their creativity and establish innovations that will lead the state into competitive world as no society would developed without sound and qualitative education.
On his part, the State Coordinator of the Project, Muhammad Datti Umar who listed the benefiting local government areas as Zaki, Shira, Ganjuwa, Katagum Darazo and Toro, said the project was designed to finance minor issues in schools in the areas of renovations, rehabilitation of twin desk and repairs of water points.
He said measures have been taken for financing records of grant activities, development of school improvement plan and use of Kobo collect software using global positioning system to capture school based management Commitee to ensure proper utilization of the funds released.
The coordinator said the programme was also designed to strengthen public schools operation through good governance and accountability for sustainable educational development.
Earlier, the Permanent Secretary, State Ministry of Education, Alhaji Musa Wadata said the project would enhance schools management by the local communities with a view to ensure community participation in school affairs.
The Permanent Secretary noted that the present administration in the state had inherited challenges in the education sector to include among others, decayed infrastructures in schools, lack of teaching and learning materials and lack of effective monitoring and acknowledged the efforts of the governor towards repositioning the sector.
He mentioned some of the achievements of the ministry within the first 100 days of his administration to among others, payment of accumulated back log of school feeding program from 2016 to date amounting to over 400, 000,000.00, purchase of over 40000 copies of assorted textbooks, and establishment of 15 skills acquisition Centers in collaboration with Women Enterpreneurship Development Initiative.