The FCT Department of Mass Education (DME) has graduated 199 students in various programmes of the school, while calling on the Federal Government to ensure the recognition of the certificate by all.
Mrs Victoria Nwaorgu, AMAC Zonal Coordinator of the department disclosed this in Abuja on Thursday at the graduation ceremony of the 2021 learners of the FCT Department of Mass Education
Nwaorgu said that there was need to make the certificate obtained at the end of the programme recognised to expand its scope and as well bring others into the programme.
According to her, there are challenges in skills acquisition because we need fund to run it and the government alone cannot provide the funds needed. ” Another challenge is that people do not recognise the certificate from this school because the work we do is not known to the world”.
Government needs to make skill acquisition compulsory for everyone. We have the mandate of training everyone in FCT to becoming skillful persons.
”We also want to see that everyone in FCT knows how to read and write. The number of out-of-school children in the territory is more than any other state as it stands,” she said.
Nwaorgu added that at inception of the programme, it was left in the hands of Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) who have now withdrawn and the equipment have now become obsolete.
According to her, most of the equipment we are using for the 27 skill programmes were supplied in 2009 and are now obsolete, so we need them to be changed.
She added that despite the challenges, the department had recorded successes in ensuring that the mission of reaching out to the illiterate adults, out-of-school youths and others were achieved.
Also, Mrs Eunice Joshua, Deputy Director in the department said some of the programmes such as literacy a d continuing education were mainstreamed into formal education.
Joshua said that students who graduate from the school could further their education to the tertiary level. In his words, ”We have literacy in basic, equivalent to primary one, two and three, which is compressed into nine months study”. We also have the post two, equivalent to primary four and post three, equivalent to primary five and six. ”We also run the continuing education where students can now proceed for their tertiary education,” she said.
She added that adult between the ages of 18 and 75 were admitted into the school to obtain certificate in literacy and skills.
In the same vein, Mrs Hajaratu Olayande, Director of the Department commended the graduands for their ability to build on what they had learnt effectively utilising the relationships and networks.
Olayande charged the graduands to build on what they had learnt in the school to make the nation proud as well as play their role in changing the narrative of the country.
”It is not enough to simply try and get by in life. You must try to excel in everything you do and in every task; large or small”. The decisions you make starting today will determine what you become. You will face many challenges but this is what the “real world” is all about.
“You must think big and out of the box, dream big not based on what is but based on what can be”. Take advantage of every opportunity that comes, build on and use your networks effectively. Work hard, play hard and in all strike a balance,” she said.
Mrs Rasheedat Usman, a mother of four thanked God for the successful graduation, hoping to build on what had been learnt in her future endeavours.
Also, Mrs Hanatu Emmanuel, a graduate of literacy and continuing education said the school had brought the best out of her as she could now read and write.
Emmanuel said that she would not stop at that stage but further her education to the tertiary level.