By Stanley Onyekwere
As part of measures to drastically reduce number of out of school children, the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) has concluded plans for intensive enrollment data collection of schools in the Territory.
In particular, the FCTA through its Education Management Information Service (EMIS) Committee of FCT Education Secretariat will by second week of school resumption commence 2018/2019 census exercise in all schools across the Territory.
It was gathered that the exercise, which will kick off in public schools is expected to produce credible and valid data that can be used for the formulation of policies in FCT, thereby enhancing quality of education.
Making this point during 2019 FCT EMIS Committee Meeting, Director of Administration and Finance (DAF), FCT Education Secretariat, Mallam Umar Marafa, said the exercise will boost proper planning, to ensure quality educational deliverables in FCT.
Marafa, who was represented by Ahmed Isah, of the Secretariat, noted that it was imperative to make an arrangement for proper data collection of schools in the Territory.
He said: “The programme is about synergy building among all the data collecting agencies and departments under the Education Secretariat.
“Over the years, government has realised that the available data for educational planning were defective, and therefore the need to make an arrangement for proper data collection.”
Also speaking, Director, Department of Policy, Planning, Research and Statistics (DPPR&S), Dr. Mohammed Sanni Ladan, explained that the EMIS system is a software that stores information, process, and then analyse it, which all the relevant departments and agencies must have.
According to him, although some schools have the software, as soon as the forthcoming academic session commences, enumerators are going down to the schools for the exercise.
“We are rubbing minds together to see how we can have a very clear school census this time around.
“We will all go back to our departments and agencies so that we sensitize others, so that by the time the census commence proper we won’t have any issues,” he said.
Similarly, Deputy Director and Head of EMIS, Stephen Oyelola, decried that in the past, there has been problem of data gathering, as private schools have not been cooperating while some unregistered schools are not participating.
He said enumerators have been selected from all the agencies including the zonal officers for the private school as well at from the local govt areas to participate in the exercise, are duly educated and ready.
“We are commencing it at the starting of next (2018/ 2019) academic session, and this year the private and public schools have been separated.
“And next year we are moving further, this data will be rightly entered from the schools, as we are going to do to our server, to be upgraded, so that right from the school, the desk officer will be entering the data.
“With this exercise, the number of out of school children will be drastically reduced to get the actual number children that are really out of school.
“The government will now go in and now get those students into the school and they will now be properly enrolled,” he stressed.