Each pupil in all public and private schools in Lagos State will have Personal Identification Number (PIN) as part of reforms to be carried out in education, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, the All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship candidate, has said.
The move, Sanwo-Olu said, is to help the government to measure the progress of the pupils, adding that the data would also be used for efficient implementation of education policies and budget.
At a meeting held with Joint Association of Private Schools in Lagos State (JAPSIL), the APC candidate said his government would partner with proprietors of privately-owned basic and secondary schools to scale up quality of teaching and learning.
Sanwo-Olu said the PIN would also discourage irregular transfer of pupils from one school to another, a development, he said, he said had impact on the cognitive development of child.
He said: “It is time we sanitise education in the state and secure the future of our children. We want to improve the quality, but it won’t be done until we know the specific number of how many pupils are in a school and the number of teachers in that school. We will introduce a unique PIN for each pupil from which we can monitor the educational progress of the pupil and properly plan for the cognitive development of such child.
“The act of transferring pupils irregularly from one school to another would also be monitored through this PIN. When parents know their children could be tracked, school attendance would improve and schools’ administrators would also sit right. Improving the quality of education across levels will be a priority of our government but we also want to justify government’s investment by introducing a policy that will cut waste.”
Sanwo-Olu frowned at the allegation of multiple taxation raised by the private schools’ proprietors, promising that his government would stop the act if discovered it was true.
According to the Lagos State government’s regulations, registration of private schools should not last for more than three months. But, the private schools’ owners complained that the process of registration took longer than the period stipulated in the law because low capacity among officials of the supervising ministries.
Sanwo-Olu promised the process would be reviewed, while assuring that the capacity of the supervising officials would be boosted for improved service delivery in schools’ registration. The governorship candidate also said the duplicity of duties by the overseeing ministries would be checked and harmonised
Sanwo-Olu said his government would enforce the statutory 500 metres distance between schools in localities, adding that schools that did not get the government approval before starting their operations would be shut.
Satisfied by the programmes of the APC candidate, the JAPSIL leadership pledged to support the government in sanitising primary and secondary school sub-sector.
The JAPSIL chairperson, Dr Olufemi Ogunsanya, said the group was satisfied with the pledges of the APC candidate, promising to work with Sanwo-Olu to achieve his programmes.
She said: “We expect every private school to get approval from the government before they commence their operations. If they do not have approvals, we will support the government in shutting down the erring schools.”