Ukpono Ukpong, Abuja
In a bid to ensure proper planning and development of education sector in the FCT, thePermanent Secretary of the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA), Sir Chinyeaka Ohaa, has called on the principals of schools to provide accurate, valid and reliable data of all schools to the administration on time.
Speaking during the flag-off of the 2018/2019 FCT level Annual School Census (ASC) which took place at the Government Secondary School, Zone 3 Abuja, Ohaa warned against falsifying any data submitted for the purpose of the school census, adding that such offence carries a heavy penalty.
“Every school Head or Principal, including the Military, Paramilitary, Federal Unity colleges and private schools are expected to provide all requested information on learners, teachers, infrastructure, facilities, programs and activities of their various schools, every child must be counted.”
While explaining that information gathered will only be used for policy formulation, decision making and planning purposes, he however dispelled the rumour that data gathered during the exercise would be used to levy schools.
“I cannot emphasize enough that collection of data is for policy formulation, decision making and planning purposes only. It is certainly not for school levy or other misconceived purposes.
In the coming weeks, the exercise will begin all over the territory and I call on all stakeholders to cooperate fully with the officials carrying out this exercise in all the educational establishments all over the FCT”, he said.
Earlier in his welcome address, the Director, Administration and Finance of the Education Secretariat, Alhaji Umar Marafa, represented by the Deputy Director in charge of administration, Mr. Abdulrazak Leramoh, said the exercise would be carried out in all basic and post basic schools across the six Area Councils of the FCT.
He urged all school heads and principals to work with officers of the Department of Policy Planning, Research and Statistics (DDPR&S) of the Secretariat towards achieving the objective of the exercise.
He also commended the United Nations Children Education Fund (UNICEF) and the Federal Ministry of Education for supporting the Secretariat in carrying out the school census.
Also speaking, the Ag. Director, Department of Policy Planning, Research and Statistics (DPPRS), Dr. Sunday Idakwoji, stressed the need for collaboration and cooperation amongst the various education stakeholders for the success of the exercise which, he said, was aimed at improving educational data collection and management in the FCT for better planning.
The Annual School Census is a fall out of the Nigeria Education Management Information System (NEMIS) policy of 2007 aimed at significantly improving collection of education data to achieve higher educational objectives.