By Magnus Emuji/Rukevwe Adugbo
Delta State Commissioner for Secondary Education, Mrs Rose Ezewu has assured officials of the State Institute of Continuing Education (ICE) which is now a parastatal of the Ministry of Basic and Secondary Education that the ministry would carry them along in the scheme of things geared towards taking education sector in the state to an enviable height.
Mrs Ezewu gave the assurance in her office in Asaba when the Acting Director of the Institute, Mr Onyema Edwin led officials of the institute to the ministry to brief the commissioner on the activities of the institute.
She said that the Ministry would provide effective support to the institute to enable it to realise the purpose for which it was set up, adding that the essence of establishing the Institute of Continuing Education (ICE) was to serve as a veritable platform for remedial classes for students who were resitting for external examinations such as the Senior School Certificate Examination.
Earlier, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Basic and Secondary Education, Mr Augustine Ede Oghoro noted that zonal offices were created to enable the institute to achieve its objectives, stressing that the institute should be designed in such a way to be determined what it would achieve in short term and midterm.
Oghoro also assured them of effective synergy with the Ministry, just as the Director of Schools in the morning, Mrs Clementina Ojumah urged the management of the ICE to provide necessary information that would assist the ministry take informed decisions for the overall benefits of the education sector.
Briefing the commissioner on their activities, the Acting Director of the Institute, Mr Onyema Edwin said that the institute was established by law in 1975 in the defunct Midwest / Bendel state, explaining that the law was reviewed in 1991 with a Governing Council charged with the responsibility of policymaking.
He highlighted the objectives of the institute to include offering courses of instruction and training leading to the Junior and Senior Secondary School Certificate Examinations or any other equivalent examinations approved by the government, serving as an educational resource centre, conducting and promoting research in all facets of education.
Mr Onyema said that the institute was also established to offer courses of instruction and training leading to Degree and Diploma certificates, arrange and organise conferences, seminars as well as study groups among others.
The ICE Acting Director, who said that the institute had expanded from initial three centres to its present fourteen centres thereby making its services available to Deltans in the three senatorial districts, disclosed that over 45,000 students from the School of Secondary Education and 30,000 students from the School of Professional Studies had graduated from the institute.
Mr Onyema further hinted that the institute had also contributed to the reduction of the rate of illiteracy and drastically curbed the rate of dropouts from the school system with its attendant security implications for the state.