Nigeria, UK education partnership about inclusion – British delegation

British Council delegation to Nigeria on Transnational Education (TNE) has said the partnership it with Nigeria was aimed at providing quality international UK curriculum education to citizens seeking to travel abroad to study right here in Nigeria.

UK Government’s Education Champion and head of the delegation Prof. Sir Steve Smith stated this in Abuja, when the Global CEO British Council, Scott McDonald and the UK Government Higher Education delegation paid a courtesy visit to some British Council Partner Schools running the Cambridge curriculum.

 The delegation heard from a panel of head teachers from 5 partner schools  including the Centagon School; Premier International School; Zamani College; The Regent Secondary School and Doveland School, and Premier International school in Wuse II, Abuja,   

Smith said that the desire of the group was to attain a first-hand view of the situation on the ground.

 ”What we are trying to ensure is to establish a partnership with Nigeria Schools and universities, and to bring into Nigeria a way of teaching by providing a curriculum that allows the best teaching in the world to happen here in Nigeria without using the cost structure that makes people travel abroad.

”So its about inclusiveness and about making sure everyone in the country have access to outstanding education and thereby solve the problem of access to education because without education its difficult to move on in life,” he stated.

Earlier, Global CEO of the British Council Scott McDonald, stated that there are currently 2000 partner schools around the world who are part of a global community benefiting positively from sharing and providing knowledge based on best practice.

Meanwhile, the Director of Examinations at the British Council Nigeria, Marniee Nottingham, said  students in British Council Partner Schools in Abuja running the Cambridge curriculum are performing excellently well and scoring top globally, she noted the challenges that limit the delivery of the curriculum, how the schools use digital technology to help with learning and how the curriculum is beneficial to preparing student for the outside world and the impact of the COVID 19 pandemic on learning.

The panel of head-teachers pointed out the challenges that limit the delivery of the curriculum in Nigeria such as the problems of internet access, robustness of teacher training, length and timing of training programmes. The teachers advocated for lengthier face-to-face sessions on the ground in Nigeria, which will reduce associated travel costs for similar programmes in the UK.

Principal of Doveland stated the difference in trying to blend the UK and Nigeria curriculum saying for example the seasons are different and so content is a bit challenging, and stressed the need for teachers to have first hand knowledge of the differences so as to get the right and necessary information that that better help in teachin the British curricullum.

Vice Principal Zamani College Shingyu Obadiaha, noted the challenges peculiar to schools in the North with a culture of not letting girls go to school, stating however that the college use the platform of the college to invite the community schools where fellow girl students teach the community students as a means of motivating them to school, as well as challenging the parents to educate the girl child.

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