The Federal Ministry of Education through the Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC) announced that one thousand, one hundred and forty-seven communities will benefit from the Special Grants of the 2019 School Based Management Committee School Improvement Programme.
The Executive Secretary of Universal Basic Education Commission, UBEC, Dr. Hamid Bobboyi, made the announcement during the first phase of the National Flag-off of the implementation of the 2019 School Based Management Committee School Improvement Programme, SBMC-SIP and the disbursement of UBEC support contributions to selected beneficiary schools across the country.
Bobboyi said funds would cover N5 million in Special Grants, N2.5 million in Macro Grants and N250 thousand Micro grants in the 2019 School Improvement Programme.
He said the flag-off event was part of ongoing efforts by the government and non-state actors to ensure improved school governance and more effective resource mobilization and utilization, through the establishment and use of school community-based structures.
According to him, the event also marked the commencement of deliberate community engagement, aimed at establishing a result-oriented mechanism for quality basic education delivery in Nigeria, through the School Based Management Committees.
Bobboyi added that this was critical to the successful implementation of the project, deliberately executed to enhance the capacity of project implementers to plan, supervise and deliver on each project component as provided in the MoU.
Stakeholders in the 1,147 benefiting school/communities had committed themselves to provide about 10% of the UBEC contribution as counterpart funding for the smooth implementation of all designated 2019 projects, he disclosed.
“The 2019 SBMC-SIP implementation activities started with the training of Master Trainers comprising of SUBEB Directors of Social Mobilization and SBMC Desk Officers on SBMC-SIP project implementation. Further to this, UBEC carried out the sensitization of stakeholders, verification of information supplied by prospective beneficiary schools that applied for the 2019 funds and the cluster-based training of SBMC-SIP Project Implementation Sub-Committees and LGEA SBMC Desk officers. After the selection of beneficiary schools for the 2019 fund, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed and award letters issued to them, in demonstration of UBEC’s readiness to fund and ensure smooth project implementation,” Dr. Bobboyi said.
The Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, represented by the Minister of State for Education, Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, said the disbursement of Support Funds was for the execution of priority school level projects, which would energize hopes for improved UBE infrastructure and classroom delivery in the 1,147 communities across the country.
Adamu believe the projects would further add value to the UBE process while urging benefiting communities to redouble their efforts in ensuring prudent use of resources and the timely completion of the designated projects.
He also called on all UBE stakeholders to support the revamping of the educational sector, through committed grassroots stakeholder partnerships, like the SBMC-SIP intervention.
According to the minister, since UBE was a community-based and stakeholder-driven programme, it required a collective approach for its successful implementation and as such stakeholders at the community level remained vital in basic education delivery and as such owners of UBE institutions domiciled in their domains.
Adamu said it was in pursuit of the ideals of the programme that UBEC instituted the School Based Management Committee School Improvement Programme, to provide financial support to communities in the planning, execution and ownership of priority basic education delivery projects in their schools.
According to him, the programme places grassroot stakeholders in a position of advantage to improve schools and lead the process of positive change and accountability in the delivery of education services.
Adamu disclosed that the Ministry was proposing to increase the funds for UBE implementation from 2% to 3% of the Consolidated Revenue Fund, in recognition of the emerging trends and step up programme implementation.
Adamu Commended the Governor of Gombe State, Muhammadu Inuwa Yahaya, saying the flag-off was apt, relevant, as well as a great push in the government’s efforts towards the education sector of the state.
Governor Yahaya who was represented by the Deputy Governor, Dr Manassah Daniel Jatau, gave the assurances that the doors of the state government were opened for partnership, collaboration and support with development partners.