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Technology Will Support, Complement Teachers’ Efforts-Toyosi Akerele-Ogunsiji

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By chukwuemeka fred agbata

Massive open online courses have made it easy for people to gain access to quality education materials and training designed for international audiences. Thankfully, a few Startups in the Edutech space, are creating similar platforms, targeted at Primary and Secondary school students. Recently, I was with Toyosi Akerele-Ogunsiji, Founder, Passnownow.com and we had a discussion on the provision of quality education, through technology.

Toyosi stated that she is worried about the poor state of education that is currently persisting in the country. This, according to her, is the because, we are looking for people to effectively and conscientiously run our private sector as well as take the reign of the public sector. “We are not raising children that have any form of qualitative advantage with their colleagues in other parts of the world”, she, however, observed.

She is not also happy wit on the part of the government and even on the part of the private sector players, as regards elevating the quality of education, especially, the teachers. “I will like to be in a country where teachers are highly paid, given equal remuneration, equal respect and regards as much as bankers, lawyers and other prestigious professionals are”, she maintained.

Toyosi observed that most people who opt to become teachers in Nigeria, are usually those who have searched for other jobs, but did not succeed, as well as many unqualified teachers, who are, in some cases, not as good as the students they are teaching.

She also stated that many of the teachers are not motivated and they do not feel like stakeholders in a process where they are supposed to be the most primary people to be consulted by the government, parents and the private sector. “You think about all these issues and then, you wonder about the quality of the schools. You think about the children that are learning and sitting on the floor in very terrible environment, where no form of unwholesome  learning can happen in those places”, she observed.

Those children, she reiterated, cannot, therefore, be put side by side with children from Ghana, UK, Finland, Canada and the USA, and other countries that are prioritizing education. She gave the example of what is currently happening in Rwanda, where private schools are shutting down because parents are now taking their children to public schools because of the high quality of education currently obtained in public schools. Toyosi observed that, Nigeria cannot claim to be the giant of Africa, with the current poor state of its education.

In her opinion, Toyosi is of the view that, technology be a very potent tool in the transformation of the educational sector in Nigeria. The first thing she wants Nigeria to look at, is the democratization of access to quality education content for children, especially, children from low income earning parents and rural communities. She noted that the schools that we currently have, are inadequate to cater for the needs of Nigerian children.

“We should also be thinking of how technology will enable children to have personalized learning, so that, children are able to learn at their own pace, read ahead and prepare ahead of classes”, Toyosi opined. She stated that we should also be thinking of the concept of disruptive innovation, to note how technology has impacted on various sectors, like Finance, Payments, Ecommerce, etc.

Toyosi is also of the view that, contrary to the popular thinking that, utilizing technology in education is expensive, it is, in fact, not expensive. She stated that, it is cheaper to build a huge technological framework that provides an open source, where children can learn basic technology, basic science, social science and English, as well as all the subjects provided in the Nigerian educational curriculum, from Primary school to the University level. “You cannot use yesterday’s knowledge to face today’s challenges and the kind of education that Nigerian children are getting does not prepare them for the future at al”, she observed.

According to Toyosi, teachers and students have to be carried along by State governments, in a bid to making the children embrace technology. This is because, most States focus only on the children and at the end of the day, they fail, just because they did not carry the teachers, who were going to teach the children along.”The teachers who are going to teach these children have to be tech-savvy”, she opined.

Toyosi does not believe that, technology will, forever, support and complement the efforts of teachers, in response to the notion that technology might, one day replace the teachers in schools. “I think that, in Nigeria, the government and the parents need to prioritize teachers as much as possible”, she concluded.

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Reps Seek Amendment of NBC Act for Radio/TV Assisted Learning

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A bill seeking to amend the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) Act, to provide for radio and television contents targeted at improved education among Nigerian pupils, on Thursday passed second reading in the House of Representatives.

 

Tagged “National Broadcasting Commission Amendment Bill, 2018,” the amendment seeks to mandate every private and public radio and television stations in Nigeria to provide dedicated education programmes that will cover all subjects in the school curriculum.

 

Leading debates on the desirability of the amendment, its sponsors, Segun Odebunmi (APC, Oyo) and James Faleke (APC, Lagos), argued that every radio and television station in Nigeria would provide for such contents to cater for the West African Examinations Council (WAEC) and National Examinations Council (NECO) syllabuses.

 

“If amended, all radio and TV stations in Nigeria, including DSTV, Star Times, etc, will be legally compelled to dedicate channels and airtime to teaching students in line with approved school curricula.

 

“It is expected that qualified instructors will be engaged by the service provider to teach the pupils via online visuals to encourage learning and enhance standard of education in Nigeria,” the sponsors submitted.

 

Such innovation, the lawmakers further argued, would be more effective than books in teaching and learning.

 

According to them, the two-legged amendment, which covers Sections 1, 2, 5, 9, 11, 12 13, 14, 19 and 26 of the Third Schedule and Principal Act, also seeks to establish Digital Access Fund (DAF) in line with global best practices.

 

The overall aim, they noted, is to strengthen the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) as an effective regulator of broadcasting in Nigeria.

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NCC Drags COSON, Okoroji, Others to Court for Operating Without Approval

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The Nigerian Copyright Commission has filed a criminal charge against Copyright Society of Nigeria, Chief Tony Okoroji, Mr. Chinedu Chukwuji, Mrs Bernice Eremieghe and Miss Anne Okomi for carrying out the duties of a collecting society without the approval of the Nigerian Copyright Commission.

In Charge No FHC/L/338C/18, filed on 8th October 2018 at the Lagos Division of the Federal High Court, the accused persons were alleged to have performed the duties of a collecting Society by demanding and collecting royalties from Noah’s Ark of 9 Sowemimo Street, GRA, Ikeja Lagos and carrying on the business of negotiating and granting licenses on behalf of Copyright owners without the approval of the Nigerian Copyright Commission and thereby committed an offence contrary to and punishable under sections 39 (4), (5) and (6) of the Copyright Act Cap C 28 Laws of the Federation of Nigerian 2004.

It will be recalled that the Nigerian Copyright Commission had on 30th April 2018, pursuant to relevant provisions of the Copyright Act and the Copyright (Collective Management Organisation) Regulation 2007, suspended the license it granted to COSON to operate as a collecting society following the refusal of the management of COSON to comply with directives of the Commission issued after an investigations into a lingering dispute in the governing board of COSON which led to conflicting claims by two groups as the legitimate governing board of the society.

The Management of COSON has continued to disregard the directive of the Commission, and also acted in violation of the Order of suspension of its operating license as a collective management Organization.

The provisions of Section 39 the Copyright Act requires any person wishing to operate as a collective management Organization to obtain prior approval of the Nigerian Copyright Commission.

In May 2010, COSON was granted approval to operate as a Collective Management Organization for Music and Sound recording, Pursuant to the said   provision, and the provisions of the Copyright (Collective Management Organizations) Regulations 2007.

The Nigerian Copyright Commission is empowered to sanction a collective management organization for failing to comply with the regulatory provisions regarding its operations or refusing to comply with the directive of the Commission. Such sanctions may include suspension of the operating license of a Collecting society and in appropriate cases, revocation of the License.

Furthermore, it is an offence under the Copyright Act to operate as a collecting Society or otherwise carry out the functions of a collective management Society without a valid licence of the Nigerian Copyright Commission.

The criminal charge filed against COSON and some members of its management team, followed an investigation by the Nigerian Copyright Commission, the outcome of which showed that COSON has acted in violation of the relevant provisions of the Law.

The Director General of the Commission has continued to reassure copyright owners in the music and sound recording industries of the commitment of the Commission to entrench a transparent and accountable system of Collective management, to enable right owners receive duly earned royalties without being short-changed.

Users of musical works are also encouraged to obtain appropriate copyright licenses from only approved collective management organizations.

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GOtv Marks 7th anniversary, Begins Open Week for Subscribers

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GOtv a digital pay television offering on the digital terrestrial television platform has announced the commencement of its open week for their subscribers in celebration of its seventh year anniversary.

 

GOtv Open Week will start from, Friday 19 October to Friday, 26 October, 2018. Customers on GOtv Plus bouquet will be treated to a special offering of a week-long access to over 65 channels on GOtv MAX bouquet.

 

GOtv Plus customers will be treated to GOtv MAX’s wide variety of sports and entertainment content such as La Liga on SS Select 4, Fox Entertainment, Sony MAX, CBS Reality and more during the open week period.

 

All these come just before the El Clasico between Barcelona and Real Madrid, La Liga’s top game, on October 28, and will be broadcast live exclusively on GOtv MAX.

 

Speaking on the anniversary and open week activities, John Ugbe, managing director, MultiChoice Nigeria said: “We are glad to celebrate this milestone with our customers, who have always been the core of our business. This celebration is indeed a testimony to our commitment to put our customers at the heart of everything we do.  As we continue to grow, we will continue to make improvements and add more value to our GOtv customers”.

 

Ugbe explained that GOtv MAX was introduced as a continuation of the GOtv’s desire to keep widening entertainment options for subscribers.

 

GOtv has four bouquets; GOtv MAX for N3200 monthly with over 65 channels, GOtv Plus bouquet which goes for N1900 monthly with over 50 channels, GOtv Value for N1350 with over 30 channels and GOtv Lite for N400 with 21 channels.

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