Cross section of summit panelist. From left to right: Stephen Ojji; CEO NoCopyCopy, Mr. Hakeem Fahm; Lagos State Commissioner for Science and Technology, Dr. Uwheru Benson; Partner, Banking and Capital market sector leader EY, West Africa, Mrs Folasade Adefisayo; Lagos State Commissioner for Education, Prof Hope Eghagha; Prof in English, University of Lagos & former Commissioner for Higher Education, Delta State

In recognition of exemplary and note worthy contribution to excellence and best practices in leadership of education that has made a positive impact in the quality of education in Nigeria, various individuals and academic institutions were recognized at National Education Summit and Awards on Sunday, 8th August, 2021 at the Lagos Oriental Hotel, Victoria Island Lagos with the theme “Rethinking Education For Innovation, Work And Sustainability; A Path Way For Education In Nigeria”

The Summit and Awards is a private sector initiative to dialogue on solution to problems of education in Nigeria along with various practices essential for expanding learning opportunities and promoting a culture of innovation and excellence in the Nigeria educational sector.

Discussing the theme of the Summit, the Guest Speakers and Discussants called for total revamp of the educational sector and policy as a panacea for quality and sustainable education in the country.

One of the Discussants, a Professor of English at the University of Lagos, and a former Commissioner for Higher Education, Delta State, Prof. Hope Eghagha condemned in its totality poor funding of education by the government and mismanagement of available meager fund by school managers. He opined that free education by governments at various levels is a sham; he therefore suggested that it is high time students are made to pay to complement what governments have to offer as subsidies. He pointed out that this might be an unpopular view but that it will also change student’s attitudes towards their studies.

In her submission, the Honorable Commissioner for Education, Lagos State, Mrs Folasade Adefisayo lend her voice to the need for government to do more for education while the “beneficiaries should be able to complement government efforts”. Adefisayo was also quick to add that the silent voice of the poor majority should be looked out for, so that their voices are not drowned by the buoyant minority who can freely afford education.

Mrs Adefisayo who also harped on poor parenting and guidance as a major setback for education development in Nigeria urged parents and guardians to do more in the upbringing of their children to be able to get the best of them. She submitted that Nigerian graduates are not as bad as publicly portrayed if given enough choices to work with.

While commenting, Lagos State Commissioner for Science and Technology, Mr. Hakeem Popoola Fahm said that the use of technological infrastructure in teaching is a way of innovating education, especially at a time like this when COVID-19 is ravaging the world. A Master Degree holder in Business Administration in Computer Information and System Science from the University of Washington DC, enjoined people to take advantage of technology to make a difference change, by blending virtual education with conventional education.

The President/CEO, NOCOPYCOPY , Nigeria’s foremost indigenous Plagiarism Checking Platform and Digitization Solution Providers, Mr. Stephen Ojji emphasized on the need to make our tertiary institutions more original by totally desisting from plagiarism or be caught up by his organization.

Dr. Benson Uwheru, Partner, Banking and Capital Market Sector Leader, EY, West Africa opined that the world should move beyond literacy and numeracy thereby making education to be evolved to recognize and promote a culture of creativity and excellence. This he explained that with the ever changing landscape of education in the world today mere literacy may not be needed for a living.

Earlier in his welcome address, the Convener of the Programme, Mr. Ogaga Akakabota said the idea behind the National Education Summit and Awards is to make education advancement and innovations work to advance lasting solutions to improve education and expand economic opportunities in Nigeria. He further explained that the organization covers collaboration of public and private partners to create, deliver, implement and evaluate resourceful and innovative programmes for educational advancement in Nigeria.

High point of the event was the presentation of awards to deserving individuals and exemplary academic institutions across all levels of education for upholding best practices and continuous advancement of education in Nigeria.

The Vice-Chancellor, University of Ilorin, Prof. Sulyman AbdulKareem who is the only individual recognized was conferred with the award of “ACADEMIC MANAGER OF THE YEAR” .

Bowen University was awarded Most Outstanding University of the Year; Salem University as the Private University Making a Difference; American International School of Abuja as the Most Outstanding International School in Nigeria.

Other awardees are Michael & Cecilia Ibru University as the Higher Institution Making a Difference; River Bank School won the Award of Excellence in Early Years Education; Chrisland Schools and Meadow Hall Education both bagged the award of Most Outstanding Private Secondary School of the Year amongst others.

Organized by Education Advancement and Innovations, the summit is a premier gathering of education policymakers, practitioners and advocates who convene for the annual event, providing an unparalleled forum for exchanging results-based solutions and strategies that can shape public policy so critical to transforming education.

The summit comes with an in-depth panel sessions highlighting new trends, successful policies and the latest innovations that are transforming education for the 21st century. Sessions provide an unparalleled forum for attendees to explore best practices critical to improving education in private and public sector of the nation.

By learning what is working and not working, attendees leave the National Summit armed with the knowledge and networks to advance innovative education reform in their institutions. This unique conference serves as a medium for stimulating and accelerating education improvements across the nation.

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