Tuesday , July 16 2024

Nobel Laureate hails Eko Excel giant strides

The 2019 Nobel Prize-winning economist, Professor Michael Kremer’s has hailed the state government’s impact on education through the EkoExcel initiative.

The renowned economist and academic, said this in a major new study which looked at the methodology underpinning some of Nigeria’s flagship education reforms. He said that the  approach to teaching, learning and school management, first started in Kenya before arriving in Nigeria, has announced learning gains among the ‘largest ever measured in international education’.  

The study  was conducted for  two school years among over 10,000 students from lower socio-economic backgrounds using indicators such as access to electricity and whether homes had dirt or mud floors. 

The study said that EKOEXCEL has made remarkable achievements, over 18,000 head teachers, adding that teachers have been retrained using the EKOEXCEL methodology.

The study said: “Over 14,000 primary school teachers from 1,011 public primary schools have also been captured under the scheme. 

The highly anticipated study by Professor Kremer and his co-authors found that early childhood development (ECD) and primary school students in the studied education program gain almost an additional year of learning (0.89) under the NewGlobe integrated methodology, learning in two years what their peers in other traditional schools learn in nearly three. 

“For early childhood development (ECD) students the gains were even bigger. ECD pupils using the same methodology as EKOEXCEL gained almost an additional year and half of learning (1.48), learning in two years what students in other schools learn in three and a half years.”

It added that foundational literacy gives children better life chances but the World Bank estimates that  50% of children in low and middle income countries cannot read with comprehension by their tenth birthday. 

The 2019 Nobel Prize Winner said: “The effects in this study are among the largest in the international education literature, particularly for a program that was already operating at scale. “This study shows that attending schools delivering highly standardized education has the potential to produce dramatic learning gains at scale, suggesting that policymakers may wish to explore incorporation of standardization, including standardized lesson plans and teacher feedback and monitoring, in their own systems.”

About Ayinla Muritala

Agbede is a seasoned Journalist with more than a decade experience as the fourth estate of the realm. He is a graduate of Mass Communication from the Univeristy of Ilorin and currently freelance with few of the Nigerian Dailies.

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