NERDC boss calls for promotion of online safety practices

The Executive Secretary, Nigerian Educational Research and Development Council (NERDC), Prof. Ismail Junaidu has called for the promotion of online safety practices as it is critical to Nigeria’s development.

Junaidu was speaking at the Critique Workshop for the Development of Online Safety Curriculum for Nigerian Schools in Mararaba Nasarawa State on Tuesday.

The workshop, organised by the Public and Private Development Centre (PPDC) is in partnership with NERDC and Google.

The workshop is the third in the series aimed at developing an online safety module for integration into school curriculum.

The executive secretary noted that the development of an online safety into school curriculum was critical to national needs particularly in the areas of value orientation, economic and social stabilisation and human capital development.

According to him, the curriculum is not being developed as a standalone School subject rather it will be infused into existing school subjects.

He explained that the main intention was to use education, which is a more sustainable approach to tackling national issues, to reverse some of the paradoxical indices of our development as a nation.

“Between 2015 and 2019, we have had cause to develop a number of new curricula and as well revised some of the existing ones.

“These efforts are geared towards meeting some critical national needs and restoration of national pride and human dignity.

“The idea of developing an online safety curriculum came also from the same perspective.

“Even though we had this burden, as an institution, we met some limitations in our efforts towards its actualisation.”

Junaidu added that the online safety curriculum is being prepared to, among other things, enable learners acquire basic knowledge, skills and competencies for safe internet use.

He said it would also equip learners with skills that would enhance their capacity to effectively use the internet to their benefit and that of the society.

He added that the online safety would provide learners with appropriate knowledge, skills and disposition needed for effective use of online tools and emerging technology.

He, however, urged all and sundry to create online safety consciousness in learners, teachers, parents, education managers and policy makers.

In her remarks, Chief Executive Officer of PPDC Mrs Nkemdikim Ilo, urged critical stakeholders like government, policy makers and NGOs to learn about the online use experiences from young Nigerians.

Ilo said once the online safety curriculum is adopted, every Nigerian child would have access to it as it would support continued education and awareness for all users as well as promote the development and adoption of new safety technologies.

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