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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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Kwesé TV Adds Hip TV to its Channel Line-Up

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Kwesé TV has added Hip TV, an urbane contemporary music and lifestyle channel for a youthful audience, to its channel line-up.

 

Available on channel 610, the channel is known and respected for entertainment news, incisive and exclusive interviews, and red carpet moments amongst others.

 

Hip TV further strengthens Kwesé TV’s music genre, joining an already impressive line-up including; REVOLT TV a music channel from Sean Combs, aka P. Diddy, which is available outside of the US for the first time only on Kwesé TV, BOX Television, Trace Africa, Trace Gospel and Trace Mziki.

 

“Kwesé TV is afrocentric and youthful so we are happy to have Hip TV, a home-grown channel for a youthful audience on our platform”, said Elizabeth Amkpa, general manager, Kwese TV Nigeria.

 

She added that Kwesé has a strong and varied music line-up so “whether you are in the mood for the distinctly Naija beat, Hip Hop, R & B or gospel from around the world, you will find them all on Kwesé TV.”

 

The channel extends Kwesé TV’s offering which already has over 70 channels including sports, movies, current affairs, news, kids programming and so much more.

 

 

 

 

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Obaseki Hails TV Inventors, Counts Impact @ World Television

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Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State has commended the inventors of television, who rose to the occasion when industrial revolution displaced traditional means of communication in Europe and America in the 1920s, to attend to the communication need of the time.

Obaseki said this in commemoration of the United Nations World Television Day, marked on November 21, yearly.

“Television has impacted positively on humanity with its power to educate, entertain and inform a mass of people simultaneously. The device has been very effective in mobilising and sensitising the populace about government policies and programmes,” he said.

He added that “beyond the traditional function of television, the device has continued to serve as a veritable tool for educating millions of Nigerians, a trendsetter, an electronic baby-minder and a means for transmitting societal values and re-orientating people.”

The governor assured that his administration’s resolve to reposition the state-owned Edo Broadcasting Service television, was in recognition of the power of the device in governance through the dissemination of educative and enlightening programmes.

“EBS will be repositioned to join the elite league of media stations to compete keenly with the big names in the industry in the areas of standards, personnel, equipment, content and in revenue generation,” he said.

Obaseki said with the new world socio-economic order that has influenced the settlement pattern of people, it would have been impossible for a town crier to move from Benin to Auchi and deliver a message to people at the same time.

Television, he maintained, does this with ease and even gives feedback, allows phone-in segment for public participation in a programme, which ultimately raises the quality of the conversation.

In December 1996, the United Nations General Assembly proclaimed 21 November as World Television Day commemorating the date on which the first World Television Forum was held.

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Nollywood Stars Join Glo-sponsored Professor Johnbull

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Season 5 of Glo-sponsored TV Drama Series, Professor Johnbull, kicks off on Tuesday with another interesting episode on NTA Network, NTA International on DSTV Channel 251 and NTA on StarTimes at 8.30 p.m. with two Nollywood stars, Osita Iheme, a.k.a. Pawpaw, and Angela Okorie joining the cast of the comedy as household members of Professor Johnbull acted by Kanayo O. Kanayo (KOK).

The duo of Iheme and Okorie who are introduced to the household of Professor Johnbull in the new episode entitled Running to the City will replace Churchill (Jnr. Pope Odonwodo) who is currently furthering his education in America and Caroline (Mercy Johnson-Okojie), Professor’s former house maid  who has also  travelled to attend to some family issues.

The challenge of mentoring the two new rusty members of the family, Nje (Angela Okorie), a village Cameroonian girl, who grew up in the professor’s country home, and Jeroboam, a.k.a Boam (Osita Iheme), who is reputed to have tended the scholar’s father’s herd back in the village therefore falls on Elizabeth (Queen Nwokoye), Professor’s daughter, who had just returned from a successful medical treatment abroad.

A very interesting episode, Running to the City also reveals how Professor Johnbull’s intervention many years ago saved Nje (Angela Okorie) when she was put in the family way in the village and was treated as a pariah.

In addition, it also shows the accommodating nature of Professor Johnbull’s entire household as the duo of Nje and Jeroboam are not only welcomed warmly but are quickly integrated into the family. The Professor who calls them “my people” also goes further by rebuffing attempt by the gateman, Abadnego (Martins Nebo), to prevent Nje and Jeroboam from having access to him.

Viewers are in for a laughter-filled evening on Tuesday as one of the regulars of the social satire, restauranteur, Olaniyi (Yomi Fash-Lanso), makes a 360-degree turn while professing love to Nje on the ground of complexion compatibility much to the consternation of his arch rival, Mai Doya (Funky Mallam),who instantly reminds him of his love for Caro, the Professor’s former house maid.

A repeat broadcast of Running to the City comes up on the same channels at 8.30.p.m. on Friday.

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