The Kaduna State Government said it would provide 770,000 units of furniture and 305,000 sets of uniforms to its public schools, as part of efforts to revamp the education sector.
This was contained in a statement signed by the State’s Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology, Dr Shehu Adamu, and made available to newsmen on Friday in Kaduna.
NAN recalls that Governor Nasiru el-Rufai had on Thursday, declared a state of emergency in the education sector, with a view to providing free and qualitative basic education.
According to the commissioner, the measure is to ensure that public schools’ infrastructure, tools and teaching standard, are improved significantly within the next six weeks.
“The goal was to effectively transform the education sector, having suffered from neglect for16 years.
“About 80 per cent of the 42,000 public primary schools in the state are dilapidated; more than half of 1.106 million pupils in these schools sit on bare floor.
“Also, the 349 secondary schools in the state are not in good condition, in addition to being understaffed, with 40 per cent of the staff unqualified
“The magnitude of the task requires that the government takes extraordinary measures to fast-track the delivery of reform agenda.
“That is why six weeks state of emergency was declared in the education sector,” he said.
The commissioner explained that out of the 770,000 furniture, 400,000 units would be distributed to primary schools while the remaining 370,000 would be given to junior and senior secondary schools.
According to him, contract for the supply of the furniture is already at the stage of tender.
Adamu said renovation profile of all secondary schools in the state, would be completed, adding that contracts for repairs and improvements would be awarded within the emergency period.
“Already, school repairs are on-going in some selected secondary schools with critical needs, and will be concluded within the six weeks period,” he said.
He said the state had a shortage of 2,226 teachers in English and Science Subjects, but that government had concluded arrangement to recruit new teachers.
“We have placed an advert to that effect and 13,000 people applied, out of which 3,500 have been shortlisted for tests and interview.
“The recruitment process will be concluded in time for the new teachers to be posted by the first week as provisions for their salaries have already been provided for in the budget.
“Support staff such as security, catering, health workers, matrons and computer laboratory technicians, would also be employed,” he added.
The commissioner said a memo had already been written, through Tenders Board, for the provision of 305,000 set of uniforms to all secondary schools students.
NAN also recalled that the government had earlier declared free basic education at primary and junior secondary school levels that eliminated fees and levies which parent were burdened with.
The policy, which commenced last Sept, has already started yielding positive result, with massive enrolment being recorded in public schools.