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By: Olamide Abe
The National Commission for Colleges of Education (NCCE) has released new directives to Provosts of Nigerian Colleges of Education for the safe reopening of their schools for academic activities during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Recall that the Federal Government had earlier ordered the closure of schools for the period of one month after the country recorded the first index case of COVID-19 pandemic, earlier in March and further ordered indefinite closure in May 2020.
Following the recent briefing by the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on Covid-19, the Federal Ministry of Education (FME) directed the immediate resumption of academic activities in Colleges of Education.
In a memo obtained for PLATFORM TIMES, the Commission announced that steps have been taken towards the reopening of Colleges of Education in Nigeria following a significant decline in the number of recorded cases of the virus in the country.
According to the memo signed by Professor Bappa-Aliyu Muhammad, the Chief Executive and Chairman of the Commission, it directed Provosts to conclude their resumption arrangements as long as they are in sync with NCDC guidelines and also ensure strict compliance with other NCCE extant quality assurance standards and guidelines.
“Colleges must continue to adhere to safety protocols and the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) guidelines. The decision to reopen institution should not, in any way, diminish the importance attached to full compliance,” the statement reads.
It also furthered that the colleges of education should expect inspection visits from staffs of the Commission and the Ministry of Education for on-the-spot inspections of physical facilities like the lecture theatres, accommodation, healthcare facilities.
“A joint inspection team comparison of the National commission for colleges of education ncce and the Federal Ministry of Education (FME) will be undertaking verification visits to inspect the reopened colleges and their level of compliance with quality assurance/safety standards.
“The impending visit will involved on-the-spot inspection of physical facilities such as lecture theatres, classrooms, staff offices, laboratories, student accommodations, emergency services/capability and healthcare services which are germane to your state of preparedness for the resumption of academic activities.”
It warned that colleges must under no circumstances, violate the full cycle of the semester system, reiterating that Colleges will periodically keep the commission updated on actions taken in conformity with this directive.