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With new score standardisation policy, no candidate will score zero in UTME, says JAMB



The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board [JAMB] has adopted a policy of score standardisation under which the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination [UTME] candidates cannot get zero even if they are absent from the examination.

JAMB said apart from absentee candidates, candidates who did not attempt any question or who did not get any answer correctly were also captured under the policy and would be awarded a “common scale with uniform metric.”

The score standardisation policy means that all candidates, who are registered for a paper, will be awarded a score for that paper, and there would be no zero scores, JAMB weekly bulletin quoted its Registrar, Prof Is-haq Oloyede, as saying in a paper titled, ‘Social responsiveness in applying assessment technicality: The case of standardisation of a zero score in the UTME.’

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Oloyede, in conjunction with other experts, made the presentation on score standardisation at the 45th International Association for Education Conference held in Azerbaijan.

The board said,

“The adoption of the score standardisation is a technical procedure for transforming candidates’ raw scores in the different subjects taken by each candidate to a common scale with uniform metric or units, which is the globally accepted procedure.

“The general public hardly understands nor appreciates why scores should be transformed and this has been generating controversies and throwing up all sorts of unfounded arguments. It is to be noted that some poorly educated professionals consider the transformation of scores as an arbitrary allocation of unmerited scores.

“The issue has been compounded by candidates whose scores of zero were transformed alongside other candidates’ scores of above zero. Transformation is generally across board and was not focused on individual candidates.

“Candidates with zero scores include those whose attempts earned them zero because they did not get any answer correct; those who mischievously did not attempt any question throughout the course of the examination as well as those who were absent from the examination.”

The board noted that apart from Oloyede, the panel of experts, which brainstormed on score standardisation, comprised Prof Boniface Nworgu, Prof Raheem Lawal, Prof Muhammad Yakasai and Dr Omokunmi Popoola.

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Student's Life

Oyo: Students in graduating classes resume



Students in graduating classes in Oyo State on Monday turned up for revision classes ahead of their final examinations.

Newsmen report that many of the students in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital, were sighted wearing face masks and adhering to safety protocols as directed by the Federal and State  Governments.

All the schools visited in Ibadan, students were seen observing the handwashing protocol at the entrance of their respective institutions as early as 7:20 a.m.

Some of the students, who spoke with newsmen, said they were excited at the resumption of academic activities.

Miss Hamidat Oladapo, a Senior Secondary School student at Ansar Ud Deen High School, Ibadan, said the resumption signified that they would soon have the opportunity to write their final examinations.

“I am very excited to resume school today because it has been long since we have been to school.

“We ought to have started the examinations but I am sure it won’t be long before we do so,” she said.

Another student, Master James Abidogun of  Islamic High School, Ibadan, said he used the period of school closure to work on past questions provided by the state government as well as participate in the online learning initiative of his school.

“Resuming school means so much to me because I will be able to further my studies,” he said.

Miss Faulat Adekemi, another SS3 student, said though she participated in the government learning programme organised on television and radio, resuming school was far better for her.

“Resumption is a great idea because it is not easy solving some challenges on some subjects while schools are closed.

“The television and online platforms were not sufficient in addressing the core areas I have difficulty with,” Adekemi said.

The students, however, said that they would be able to comply with COVID-19 safety protocols and endure wearing face masks for long hours.

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Newsmen report that some schools had to provide facilities needed to adhere to COVID-19 safety protocols with little or no support from the Parents Teachers Association (PTA)  and School Governing Board (SGB).

Commenting on the graduating classes resumption, Mr Akinkunmi Ogunsola, the Principal of St Patrick’s Secondary School, Ibadan, said that students were punctual to school and wearing their face masks.

“Government on its part provided all the necessary materials like the posters to educate students on compliance with safety protocols on COVID-19.

“The teachers are also ready to teach the students.  About 70 per cent of the students are in school already. They came excitedly and enmasse.

“They were distributed into 15 students per class with zigzag sitting arrangements,” Ogunsola said.

Also speaking, Mr Fasasu Abdullahi, the Principal of  Islamic High School, Bashorun, Ibadan, said a reasonable number of students resumed and all the safety measures were on ground.

“They came with their face masks, washed their hands at the washing hand basins provided at the entrance while temperature was checked.

“We have no complaints from any parent. The PTA has assisted us by providing handwashing basins, sanitisers and detergents for the use of students and staff.

“They also helped to repair chairs so that there can be enough to ensure social distancing, ” Abdullahi said.

Mr Adedoja Adetunji, a teacher at Ansar Ud Deen High School, Ibadan, said the school had ensured a clean environment and enforced safety protocols.

“We have 36 students in SS3 divided into three classes; Science, Arts and Commercial.

“We spaced them according to the required guideline.

“Our JSS 3 students are about 140 in all. We divided them into six classes; A, B, C, D and E with 27 students in each class and we provided them adequate spacing.

“We have bought hand sanitisers for staff and we have more than six buckets with tap and soap,” Adetunji said.

Ms  Christianah Akande, a teacher at People’s Primary School, Ring Road, Ibadan, urged parents to release their children to attend classes.

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Newsmen reports that at   St. Leo’s Primary School, Ibadan, a handful of teachers reported for duty wearing facemasks.

Newsmen who also visited some private schools in Ibadan metropolis, reports that most of them were open with students observing COVID-19 safety protocols.

Some private schools were, however, yet to reopen.

Mr Aremu Akanfe, the Proprietor of God is Able Group of Schools, said his institution was following the guidelines provided by the government on school reopening.

“About 80 per cent of students in graduating classes resumed on Monday as early as 7 am,” Akanfe said.

Meanwhile, some observers have argued that the automated soap dispensers and hand washing basins were needed in schools as against the manual ones in use.

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Some parents also have refused to allow their wards back to school until they were sure all safety protocols could be adhered to.












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I restored hope to 500 community households, 50 schools in Kwara within 154 days – Corper



Global change maker and multiple award winner, Emmanuel Oluwasayomi Ahmadu
Global change maker and multiple award winner, Emmanuel Oluwasayomi Ahmadu

Global change-maker and multiple award winner, Emmanuel Oluwasayomi Ahmadu, says he restored hope to 500 community households and 50 secondary schools across three local government areas of Kwara through his mental health awareness and sensitisation Programmes, focused on tackling depression and suicide as well as the distribution of preventive kits (face masks) to 500 households, followed with safety awareness campaign across the community tackle COVID-19 pandemic in Kwara state.

His impact, according to him, got him a recommendation letter for NYSC state and national awards and employment to the state governments by the Ilorin East Local Government Council where he was serving.

Ahmadu said in Ilorin on Thursday that one of the major problems he wanted to solve was tackling the global menace of depression.
He said that depression had emerged as a predominant challenge in Nigeria leading to young persons and adults taking their own lives and indulging in societal vices, due to inability to cope with societal pressures.

According to him, these gave rise to hopelessness, cultism, examination malpractices, drug abuse, rape, robbery, trafficking, prostitution, school dropouts, teenage pregnancy, internet frauds, suicide and other societal misconducts.

“Prevalent among adolescents and youths in the country from the study I made, I discovered that depression is a mental illness that occurs in different stages which ranges from the mild stage to the moderate stage and to the severe stage.

“In the mild stage of depression, the individual experiences some symptoms, this is the best time to seek help or professional counsel before it gets worse.

“I discovered that most people don’t speak up to get help from the appropriate professional quarters or they do not know where to go when they face mental distress.

“They prefer to endure the pain and die in silence unless they are able to find trust in someone in whom they share their pain.

“So I decided to make it one of my personal community development projects to host ‘Mental Health Awareness And Sensitisation Programmes ’ that could serve as a platform to bringing together survivors, relevant NGOs, agencies and mental health advocates.

“To provide free professional mental health services to the people at their door steps in schools, campuses, communities, mosques, churches and other social institutions in order to meet the psychological and mental needs of these people and give them a reason to be joyful.

“I was able to successfully execute the mental health awareness and sensitisation programmes before the COVID-19 pandemic started, thereby restoring hope to thousands of young people in 50 most populated selected secondary schools spread across three local government areas of Ilorin,” he said.

He said that in Ilorin East Local Government Secretariat in Oke-Oyi community where he was currently serving, the projects restored hope to more than 120,000 young people and adults spread across the community and across the 50 selected secondary schools in the state capital.

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In his efforts to also curb the spread of COVID-19 among young people, Ahmadu said that he embarked on tackling the global menace of coronavirus in the state during the outbreak by sensitising over 500 households in the community on preventive practices and distributed nose masks to them.

“The negative impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the lives of the community dwellers where I am posted to serve drew my attention and made me thought of problem-solving plan to alleviate their pain.

“I led my team to embark on an awareness and sensitisation campaign to back government’s efforts in curbing the spread of the ravaging coronavirus across the state.

“With increase in the number of cases, I thought it would be wise to create a sensitisation campaign to aid efforts of reaching out to my host community, who are vulnerable and lack awareness.

“The campaign was tagged: ‘Tackling the Global Menace of COVID-19 in Kwara State’.

“My team collaborated with the COVID-19 team in Kwara alongside the state government and other advocates to launch the distribution of COVID-19 preventive kit (face masks) to 500 households within the Oke-Oyi community and its suburbs.

“The sensitisation campaign was readily supported by NYSC, advocay groups, NGOs, youth and community leaders which happened to be a success.

“All resources and funds needed were contributed by different organisations and individuals. Most of them were people who were readily committed to the cause of suicide prevention,” he said.

On the impact of the projects on the communities, he said it served as a ray of hope to youths, who were passing through mental health issues.

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He described the project as a rescue project that served as a ray of hope to thousands of adolescents and youths, who were going through different categories of mental health issues ranging from depression, despair, suicidal thoughts and attempts, hopelessness and low self-esteem.

“All these are caused by social and economic pressures, broken homes, failure, traumatic experiences, rape and abuse, among other factors.

“Having opened up on my life-threatening experiences to the students and how I came out strong, they were touched by the story and with the evidence they saw.

“It was at this point that I realised young people face a lot of pressure daily, leading to stress, hopelessness, depression, failures, abuse, suicidal thought, fear and despair.

“These people usually do not like to talk about it or are scared to open up on their mental health conditions and as a result, the much attention required is not given to it,” Ahmadu said.

He tasked relevant stakeholders to rise and team up with survivors of related mental health conditions to address the menace, reach out to schools at the elementary, middle and tertiary levels, religious organisations and social institutions with the goal of saving the vulnerable.

“The aim for doing this is to give ears to victims as well as to provide solutions to their problems through restoration of hope,” he said.

On his aspirations, Ahmadu said that he wanted to be a hope in the mind of troubled adolescents and youths in Africa.

“In recent times, millions of people have been thrown into hopelessness and depression in Nigeria, affecting both the rich and the poor, due to the impact of the COVID-19 global pandemic.

“It has been predicted by World Health Organisation (WHO), that depression will rise in 2020 to become the second most prevailing health problem in the history of the world, leading to increased suicide rates, societal misconducts and mental health issues.

“Unless victims of mental health issues find someone who have gone through similar experience or worse situation who can understand their pain and help them to regain hope, they may never voice their pain.

“As a survivor of depression whose success story has gained global attention and reportage, I have served as a source of hope to millions of people globally, thereby contributing towards tackling depression and suicide menace.

“I have written a precise proposal ready for submission to identifying my story as a symbol of hope with telecommunication brands, who sees mental security of Nigerians as a priority both during and post COVID-19.

“I wish to contribute my wealth of experience by partnering as a brand ambassador on corporate social responsibility with telecommunication brands.

“To serve as a platform where people going through societal pressures, hopelessness and traumas leading to depression and suicidal thoughts can speak up for free to get help through professional support system.

“I also seek financial support to complete my NGO registration process and seeking partnerships with relevant national, international brands and stakeholders to effectively drive the solutions to the grassroots, high schools, campuses and communities nationwide.

“For example, if there is a fire outbreak in Nigeria, people call 112 or 119. But when we are having mental insecurity or issue, whom do we call? There should be an emergency line to call on mental issues,” he said.

He said that it was important for corps members to make themselves relevant to society while still serving, through whatever problem-solving ideas they have.

“Corps members need to realise that the service year is a symbol of the future they have dreamed about.

“It should be taken as a stage to equip and develop themselves with needed skills, to solve societal problems in various industries that they eventually find themselves,” Ahmadu said.

Ahmadu is popularly known as Mr Voiceover, he is a voice-over artiste, a writer, a budding Nollywood actor, brand ambassador, and an SDG advocate and volunteer.

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He is currently a 2019 Batch B, Stream II corps member serving at the Ilorin East local government secretariat.

It will be recalled that Ahmadu was a victim of a broken home from an early age and was enrolled in 16 primary schools and attended 14 secondary schools.

He wrote his Ordinary Level (OL) examinations 17 times in five years and also wrote the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME), five times before securing admission into the University of Benin to read Mass Communication.


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 SSCE timetable in circulation not from us, WAEC warns candidates




The West African Examination Council has advised Nigerians to disregard the timetable for the 2020/2021 Senior Secondary School Examination circulating online.

The Head of Public Affairs, WAEC, Nigeria, Mr Demianus Ojijeogu, told our correspondent on Sunday that the timetable circulating was not from the examination body.

He said,

“The timetable in circulation did not emanate from WAEC, Nigeria. Please, disregard.”

Recall that the 2020 WASSCE was initially scheduled to hold between April 6 and June 5, but was postponed because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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