Oando Foundation, an independent charity organisation has equipped 80 primary schools in 22 states and the FCT, in its efforts to boost access to quality education in the country.
Mrs Adekanla Adegoke, Head of the foundation, made the disclosure at the inauguration of a block of three classrooms, ICT Centre and toilet facility at LEA Primary School Rido in Kaduna on Wednesday.
The facilities were donated to the school by the foundation, as part of Oando’s corporate social responsibility.
According to her, the foundation has initiated a programme tagged Adopt-A-School Initiative (AASI), aimed at holistic improvement of public primary schools.
“AASI was initiated in 2007 in partnership with the Ministry of Education and State Universal Basic Education Boards in line with Oando Foundation’s mission of transforming lives through education.
“AASI is focused on improving the overall quality of basic education in public primary schools and to create a sustainable model for effective teaching and learning in all adopted schools.”
She said that the 80 schools adopted by Oando Foundation were located in Adamawa, Akwa-Ibom, Bauchi, Bayelsa, Cross River, Ebonyi, Edo, Ekiti, Enugu, Kaduna, Katsina, Kwara and Lagos states.
Others are in Niger, Ogun, Ondo, Osun, Oyo, Plateau, Rivers, Sokoto, Taraba, and the FCT.
She disclosed that the foundation had adopted two schools in Kaduna state, namely LEA Primary School, Rido, and LEA Primary School Rigasa.
“The foundation has so far spent about N50 million in LEA Rido since its adoption in 2011.
“We constructed two blocks of five classrooms and sanitation facilities to improve hygiene.
“We equally offered scholarship to 22 students to support their secondary education, provided over 1,000 units of teaching and learning materials to strengthen the quality of teaching and learning in the school.
“We have also built the capacity of teachers and head teachers in modern teaching techniques,” the official said.
She added that the foundation also partnered Sumitomo Chemical, a Japanese company, to establish the solar powered ICT centres in public primary schools in Kaduna, Lagos and Taraba states.
“While most children in rural areas do not have access to a computer, three out of every five children in the urban areas lack basic ICT skills.
“To reverse this negative trend, the foundation has established 15 ICT/Creative Centres in its adopted schools, serving the learning needs of over 16,000 pupils.
“Together with Sumitomo Chemical and other well-meaning organisations like the Educate-A-Child Qatar, we are creating an enabling environment to provide pupils from marginalised backgrounds invaluable 21st century technology skills, “Adegoke said.
Also speaking, the Executive Chairman of SUBEB, Malam Nasir Umar thanked the foundation for the gesture, saying that “education is a collective responsibility”.
Represented by a Permanent Member of the board, Mrs Mary Ambi, the chairman called on other corporate organizations to emulate the gesture.
Similarly, the Village Head of the community, Alhaji Hamisu Haruna also commended the effort, adding that it would reduce current congestion of over 300 pupils per class.
He said that the school, built in the 1960s and with a population of about 2,000 pupils, has only seven classrooms, stressing that much would be required to bridge the gap.