Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State

Stakeholders applaud Lagos for scheduled school reopening

*Resumption will enable private school owners, teachers to start work ─NAPPS President

Isola Moses | ConsumerConnect

Some stakeholders in the educations sector have commended the Lagos State Government on the proposed reopening of schools, as part of an effort at gradually easing the lockdown occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic in the state.

They made the commendation in interviews in Lagos Sunday, August 30, according to News Agency of Nigeria.

Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State, Saturday had announced that tertiary institutions in the state would reopen from September 14, while primary and secondary schools might resume from September 21.

Mr. Olawale Amusa, President, National Association of Proprietors of Private Schools (NAPPS), Lagos State Chapter, said that the decision was cheering.

According him, private school owners are ready for resumption.

Amusa said: “Since final-year students of secondary schools resumed to prepare for WASSCE, inspectors from the State Ministry of Education have been going round schools, and none of our members was found wanting.

“Reopening schools is long-awaited. Schools were closed for the past five months, and many of our members were unable to pay salary.

“Those that were able paid their staff between 25 percent and 50 percent on monthly basis.”

The resumption would make private school owners and teachers to start work, NAPPS President.

He stated: “Private schools’ associations in Lagos State and the Ministry of Education have been working together to ensure safety of children because they are the future of tomorrow.

“For our association, we inaugurated NAPPS Quality Assurance Committee to go round and inspect our members’ schools; the committee submitted its report two weeks ago.

“Those found below average were cautioned and necessary checklist given to them.”

Requirements for schools ahead of the resumption, such as infrared thermometer, sanitiser and wash-hand basins, were given to the members at a low cost, he disclosed.

Mr. Adedoyin Adesina, Chairman, Nigerian Union of Teachers (NUT), Lagos State Wing, said that NUT was delighted at the announcement.

Adesina, who said that teachers and students were tired of staying at home, nonetheless, noted that some students engaged in meaningful activities such as learning entrepreneurial skills.

He noted that “with the latest development, hopefully tertiary institutions can finish first semester in December 2020 so that they can start a new semester next year.

“I am disturbed concerning primary and secondary schools because most of them did not finish or write second term examination.

“I do not know how they will conclude second and third terms this year without it affecting the scheme of work.”

Adesina said that governments would need to restructure and refurbish public schools in order to comply with the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) guidelines on the prevention of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Both the Federal and state governments need to start showing more concern on public schools because a lot of them lack tables, chairs, classrooms and so on,” he said.

Mr. Simeon Fowowe, National President, Association of Nursery and Primary Education Instructors in Nigeria (ANPEIN), also remarked that reopening of schools in Lagos is a welcome development.

Education stakeholders such as parents, teachers, caregivers, associations and heads of institutions were ready for the resumption, he said.

Fowowe stated: “By the records available, the number of COVID-19 infections has decreased, which means all hands must be on deck to prevent its further spread.

“We must stick to the prescribed precautionary measures in all schools.

“For our association, we have sufficiently equipped our members for the task ahead,” he said.

He stressed that the association trained its members on how to cope with emergencies and on precautionary measures before, during and after teaching.

“We appreciate Lagos State Government and its ministry of education for blazing the trail in this regard.

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