Two hundred teachers and six (206) chief inspectors of education (CIEs) from Edo and Delta have commenced a three-month training under the second edition of the NPDC/Seplat Petroleum Development Company PLC joint venture teachers’ empowerment program, known as STEP.
They would be trained on modern learning techniques, critical thinking skills, problem-solving skills, and lesson notes.
Speaking at the formal inauguration of the program in Benin weekend, the Director, External Affairs and Sustainability, SEPLAT, Dr. Chioma Nwachukwu, said the process for the selection of the benefiting teachers commenced with an online test for 874 teachers that registered from all schools in Edo and Delta.
Nwachukwu, represented by the Manager, Corporate Social Responsibility, Seplat, Esther Icha, added that the beneficiaries were drawn from 28 schools each from both states.
She said the strategy for selection included five teachers, each representing every public school and two from private schools.
The program commenced with a three-day workshop in Benin, designed to empower teachers to access the Seplat Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) app.
“They are now going to apply learning and demonstration, and that is why the STEM training is very critical in nation-building,” stated Nwachukwu.
She further explained that the training would end with the award of certificates to successful teachers in February 2022. Beneficiaries are expected to set up a STEM club in their various schools.
“STEM club will usher in an exhibition where the use of STEM to proffer solutions to world problems will be showcased,” she said.
Meanwhile, the Permanent Secretary, Edo State Ministry of Education, Stellamaris Imasuen, explained that the Seplat mandate was in line with the Edo government’s vision for education.
Represented by the Executive Director, Science Vocational and Technical Education, Odegua Kushe, she stated, “The impact of the training, which you started last year, is evident in the increase of students participating in science and technology competitions at both local and international levels.”
Also, the Delta State Commissioner for Basic and Secondary Education, Rose Ezewu, commended the company for collaborating with the government to build the capacity of teachers to be equipped with modern techniques for improved classroom experiences.
Ezewu, represented by the Director of School Services, Ufuoma Oduma, said over the years, teaching and learning in the country had suffered huge setbacks in the face of modern technology.
“But with intervention from a company like Seplat in collaboration with government, a new era of nourishing classroom experiences has been ushered in,” noted Ezewu. “We appreciate the intervention of your organization on the STEP program on STEM.”
On his part, Alli Zahra, Managing Director, NPDC, represented by Bassey Bassey, highlighted the purpose and impact of teachers in nation-building, hence the need for such training.
Some of the beneficiaries said the training would be an opportunity to change the narrative in their daily activities. One hundred teachers and 43 CIEs benefited from the first edition of the program last year.