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BRIEF HISTORY OF SBRS/ ABU, FUNTUA

When the Ahmadu Bello University was established in 1962, it was mandated to, among other things, to secure the diffusion of knowledge in the Northern Nigeria in particular, and the country in general. Thus in 1970, the university established the school of Basic Studies (SBS) in order to increase the pool of qualified students from its catchment’s area. This was necessitated by the poor performance of otherwise good students in the Higher School Certificate (HSC) Examination. This strategy was highly successful because it concentrated well qualified teachers in one school with concomitant provision of prerequisite laboratory, classroom and other facilities for serious study. Unfortunately, the SBS was closed down in 1987 as a result of change in government’s policy. However, in 1988, the university set up the School of General and Remedial Studies (SGRS) in compliance with the government’s new educational policy. And the directive of the Nigerian University Commission (NUC) to that effect. The SGRS was later marred by various problems, and closed down in 1996.

Despite the failure of the SGRS, the need to address the continuing decline in education in the Northern States remains pressing and immediate. The current statistics from the Joint Matriculation Board (JAMB) indicate that there is a continuous decline in the number and the quality of students from the northern states, who sit for the UME examination. Similarly, available data from the federal tertiary institutions indicates that the northern states are unable, to a large extent, to fill their quotas in students’ enrolment. Worse still, there is a high failure and correspondingly high dropout rate among those few who are admitted in the basic and applied science.

These disturbing trends call for concerted efforts at addressing the problems. The Ahmadu Bello University is committed to finding solutions to these problems and it will work with all the Governments of the Northern states in this regard. In addition to assisting the states to reactivate their schools, however, the university will use the SBS – model to augment whatever number of qualified candidates may emerge from the secondary school system in its catchment’s area. The current stance of the University on the SBRS is sequel to the decision of the Federal Executive Council of 9th March, 2000, to the effect that Remedial Studies could be established in Tertiary institutions, especially in educationally less developed states in the federation. In compliance with the directive FMEPS/213/c.1/1/190 from the federal ministry of Education, the Governing Council of the Ahmadu Bello University approved the reintroduction of a self – funding school of Basic and remedial studies (SBRS). The school with quality teaching staff and up – to - date facilities.

As a pre- degree training institution, the SBRS will be governed by regulations which limit the activities of students to the primary functions for which the school is Established. Students and Staff are expected to comply with this principle and they are advised to come into the school only on its condition. Students are expected to reside Within the school’s premises and take care of their feeding and other sundry needs. On its part, the school will permit certified private caterers and operators of kiosks, shops and saloons to operate within its premises so that the needs of the students are provided for. The SBRS is located in Funtua, Kastina state, about 70 km from the main campus of the Ahmadu Bello University.

 


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