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How teacher support, innovation propelled indigent pupil’s success in external examination

Eleven years old scholar, Shiji Sowemimo has been celebrated for performing exceptionally well in the country’s national common entrance examination, scoring an astonishing 190 marks out of 200. The achievement is even more remarkable as Shoji comes from one of the more impoverished areas of Lagos and has been raised by a single mother. His performance in the exam sets him on the path to greatness and gives him the opportunity to attend one of the prestigious secondary schools in the country.

Shiji attributes the success to the support he got from his mother, teachers and school, especially during the COVID-19 lockdown. According to him, “I continued reading and preparing for my exams with the remote learning materials provided by my school during the school closure “He added, “With the remote learning materials, I remembered everything that I was taught in the classroom and was able to learn new things.”

Shiji’s primary school, Bridge International Academies Anibaba in Ikorodu, is part of a network of nursery and primary schools that serve low-income communities across Lagos and Osun. During recent school closures due to COVID-19, Bridge supported all primary 6 pupils with free common entrance prep practise questions, in addition to the daily lessons in the @ Home remote learning programme which include learning guides, self-study activity packs, virtual storybook library and free mobile interactive quizzes which helped children keep track of their studies all through the school closure.

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The Academics Director at Bridge Lagos, Rhoda Odigboh said: “Our teachers must take some credit for the success of their pupils. The learning gains evidenced at Bridge is as a result of the dedication, passion and hard work by our teachers who are at the heart of our mission of delivering a life-changing education for children.”

“The success our children have achieved in the national exam shows what Bridge has always believed that every Nigerian child can excel if given the right opportunities, supportive teachers and empowering schools. Odigboh added.

According to Shiji’s Mother, her sons have a corner in their home where they keep equipment like speakers, batteries, light bulbs, spoilt lamps, magnets, spoilt radio, etc. which they would dismantle to see the components in them and after reading about how those equipment are made, and they would re-assemble them again. “I noticed from when they were much younger, that they are inquisitive and like learning new things so I encourage them to the best of my ability and allow them to explore and satisfy their curiosity,” She said. “The joy of every parent is to see their children excel, I am grateful to God for giving me the strength and wisdom to support my children and I am proud and happy for what Shiji has been able to accomplish” She added.

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