Ongoing efforts toward development of education in Nigeria has gained a boost as a bill which seeks to establish a University of Education in Pankshin, Plateau State scaled through Third Reading on the floor of the House of Representatives.
The bill was passed at the Committee of the Whole sequel to the adoption of the report and recommendations of the House Committee on Tertiary Education chaired by Hon. Aminu Suleiman.
Clause 1(1) of the bill for the establishment of Federal University in Pankshin Plateau State which was sponsored by Chairman, House Committee on navy, Hon. Yusuf Gadgi, seeks to upgrade the status of Federal College of Education, Pankshin, Plateau State to a Federal University of Education Pankshin, Plateau State, as a training institution for the development of teacher education in the country.
Clause 1(4) further provides that the “University shall be supervised by the Federal Ministry of Education through the National Universities Commission (NUC) who is responsible for approving and regulating all academic programmes run in the University, to ensure quality compliance and provide funds for academic and research programmes infrastructures and remunerations of employees.”
The objectives of the University as stipulated in the bill, include: “encourage the advancement of learning and to hold out to all persons without distinction of race, creed, sex or political conviction; develop and offer academic programmes leading to the award of certificates, first degrees, post-graduate, diploma and higher degrees with emphasis on planning, developmental and adaptive skills in education, technology, applied science, agriculture, commerce, arts, social science, humanities, management and allied professional disciplines; produce socially mature experts in education with capabilities not to only understand educational needs of Nigeria as a nation, but also to exploit existing educational infrastructure and improve on it to develop new ones.
The University is also expected to: act as agents and catalysts for effective educational system, through post graduate training, research and innovation, for effective economic utilisation and conservation of the country’s human resources as well as bring quality change in education by focusing on teacher education through teaching and learning innovations.
Clause 1(f) also empowers the University to collaborate with other national and international institutions involved in training, research and development of education with a view to promoting governance, leadership and management skills among educational managers; and identify educational needs of the society with a view to finding solutions to them within the context of overall national development.
The Institution is also expected to provide and promote sound basic education training as a foundation for the development of Nigeria, taking into account indigenous culture and the need to enhance national unity; provide higher education and foster a systematic advancement of the science and act of teacher education; and provide for instruction in such branches of teacher education as it may deem necessary to make provision for research advancement and dissemination of knowledge in such manner as it may determine;
Clause 1(k) further empower University to provide teachers with operational competence for teaching in pre-tertiary institutions, basic, senior secondary schools and non-formal educational institutions; and undertake any other activity that is appropriate for a university of education of the highest standard.