By; BAYO AKAMO, Ibadan
Oyo State Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology, Professor Joseph Adeniyi Olowofela on Thursday said the state government will not reverse its education policy on ‘no automatic promotion’ for students in public secondary schools in the state .
Professor Olowofela stated this at a sensitisation workshop on key policy direction towards improved secondary school system held at Mokola, Ibadan
According to him, the policy had been of gains since its introduction by the present administration in the state, saying, the performance of Oyo state students in the last WAEC exam was very impressive compared with the past before the introduction of the policy.
Emphasizing that the state provided a window for repeaters who would like to continue in the secondary school by offering to assist them in the state owned Technical Colleges,he stressed that there was urgent need to expose parents to the benefits of technical and vocational education as solution to growing youth unemployment and restiveness.
“In this constantly changing and increasingly competitive world , Oyo state’s pacesetter status makes us ever forward looking.The situation of repeaters or drop-outs in our secondary schools is at variance with the vision of the government of the day to make the state a knowledge based economy , where unemployed graduates and secondary school leavers are equipped with competitive support service skills that make them sought after by employers” he said.
The Commissioner pointed out that the ‘ no automatic promotion policy has led to unsavoury fallouts and that having been fully convinced of the beneficial nature of the policy, “government forged ahead and the schools are beginning to reap the dividends accruable there from”.
He added that “however, an aspect of the unsavoury outcome of the policy I must not fail to mention here is the escalation in the rate of truancy and anti-social behaviour in our schools , being perpetrated by repeaters who have stopped attending classes.
“The Ministry has been kept on her toes working with schools to deal with the no man’s land set up by these students”.
Chairman, Centre for Organisational and Professional Ethics (COPE-Africa), Dr Adeyeye Adewole in his welcome address, said the programme was part of the re-positioning agenda of Oyo state government aimed at creating necessary awareness and proactive response mechanism from among critical stakeholders as well as engender much needed support so that everyone could adequately key into the on going reformative strategies towards sustainable development of Oyo state educational system.