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Curriculum: Stop playing politics with Education

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– NERDC warns politicians, ‘mischief makers’

…Babatunde Opalana 

The Nigerian Educational Research And Development Council (NERDC) appeal to politicians and fifth columnist to desist from dragging educational issues into political confusion capable of destabilising the education sector and mortgaging the future of the upcoming generation of Nigerians.
Executive Secretary of NERDC, Prof. Ismail Junaidu in a statement in Abuja on Tuesday, described as false and unfounded, claims peddled on social media platforms and a national daily that  Christian Religious Knowledge is no longer existing in school but it is a theme in Civic Education and that Christian Student, consequently will be left with no option than to study Islamic Arabic Studies.

Contrary to the rumour that Christian Religious Studies have been removed from school curriculum, the Executive Secretary said, “For the avoidance of doubt, the last review of the curriculum was approved in 2013 and implementation commenced in September 2014. In both instances, neither the Christian Religious Knowledge nor Islamic Studies was removed from the curriculum.

“In fact, at the commencement of the present administration, the Hon. Minister of Education sought and obtained the approval of the National Council on Education to make Christian Religious Knowledge compulsory for all Christians students and Islamic Studies compulsory for their Muslim counterparts.

It is obvious after perusing these claims, that while some of the peddlers operate from the oblivious side of information, many resort to this out of mischief needless of being extended into the critical sector of education.”, he said

NERDC, he stated, that the subject offerings (Civic Education, Social Studies, Christian Religious Knowledge, Islamic Studies and Security Education) under the Religion and National Values Curriculum are distinct, as listed and taught separately on the time table.

Prof. Junaidu warned that no child should be coerced or compelled to learn or be taught in school any religious studies subject but only one (out of the two) that restrictively relates to the belief system professed by the child and his/her parents.

He added that teachers had been trained in the six Geopolitical Zones to be able to teach these distinct subjects. They are well aware of the mode of teaching the Religion and National Values Curriculum as distinct subjects on the time table.

He said, NERDC hereby states that; CRK is still taught in schools; as a separate distinct
subject with the accompanying Teachers’ Guide; CRK is not a theme in Civic Education. Civic Education is a distinct subject on its own which teaches the rudiments of citizenship; there is no subject in the Nigerian School Curriculum called Islamic Arabic Studies nor anywhere in the world as being speculated

He added that efforts are in top gear to print the Christian Religious Knowledge and Islamic Studies Curriculum separately in order to maintain their characteristics and distinctiveness.

NERDC, he said, stands for integrity and excellence in educational research and
development. The management stands for education for human dignity,
economic reconstruction and value reorientation.

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