By Favour Nnabugwu
Federal Government has entered into technical partnership with the United Kingdom, UK, to borrow expertise on employable skills for school drop-outs across the country.
Stamping the partnership with Highbury College, Portmouths, UK on behalf of the Federal Government in Abuja Tuesday, the Minister of State for Education, Barr. Nyesom Wike, said that government appreciated vocational skills model of Highbury College for the development of vocational education in the country.
Wike who received a five-man delegation of the college at his office led by principal and chief executive of the UK College, Mrs Stella Mbubaegbu stated that the Federal Government was working hard to ensure that school drop-outs loitering the streets of the country are gainfully engaged in carpentry, engineering, fashion, automotive for entrepreneurial and commercial use.
“We are entering into technical partnership with Highbury College for them to guide us on how the project will be concluded while they also provide relevant curriculum for our vocational schools.”
He said that Highbury team would help the country to identify relevant industries that will partner with the Nigerian vocational schools for internship and onward employment.
“We are keen to share good practices with our international partners. Together, we can improve and develop education, both here and in the UK.
“Our focus is to use technical and vocational education to create jobs for Nigerian youths. We hope to provide quality training that would assist the youths to enhance their standard of living.
“We want to make sure we engage the youth especially those that dropped out of schools for one reason or the other, so that at the end of the day, they will have something to fall back on even when they decide not to go back to school.”
The minister had led a high powered delegation to Highburty College, which has a strong record of providing partnership and support in the country.
He said that the Federal Government would create close to a million jobs through investments in technical and vocational education (TVE).
While in Portsmouth, he stated that the Jonathan administration was committed to the empowerment of Nigerian youths to contribute to national development.
He said the Federal Ministry of Education has commenced collaboration with educational institutions in Taiwan, South Korea and the UK to create access to functional vocational education for Nigerian youths.
He said; “Our focus is to use technical and vocational education to create jobs for Nigerian youths. We hope to provide quality training that would assist the youths enhance their standard of living.
“Our children must have functional skills across different trades. The government will make vocational and technical education very attractive to our youths.”
He said that it was high time technical and vocational education assumed its rightful place to help solve the economic challenges facing Nigerians.