Osun And Chams Plc Launch Smart ID Cards For Public Schools

The Osun government has launched Smart ID cards with biometric identification for public schools in the state.

The Osun State government in its determination to use technology to improve planning, allocation of resources and service delivery in the education sector, has launched a first-of-its-kind smart identity card with biometric features for all public school students in the state.

The launch of the initiative took place at Salvation Army School, Alekuwodo, Oshogbo, Osun State.

An initiative of Chams Plc, the smart ID card is linked back to a central database which provides the government of the State of Osun with accurate and reliable data on the identity and number students attending public schools in the state.

Speaking on the occasion, the state governor, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, said: "In the history of human inventions, there are not too many inventions that are as useful as technology in terms of its efficiency and effectiveness at providing solutions to human problems. This is the reason why the government of the State of Osun adopted and is deploying technology as the solution to the legacy of inefficiency bequeathed to the civil service by past inept leaders. The Osun Student Smart ID card which is embedded with biometric features is also an ingenious technology solution that we have adopted to further raise the service delivery levels in the education sector."

The governor added that with the card, each student is a unique and identifiable individual that cannot be mistaken for another person. "Effortlessly, government can identify all students in public schools, and have access to their information at the push of a button. It improves the effectiveness of life enriching programmes such as the O’Meals, O’Schools and Opon Imo, among other other innovations put in place for the welfare of students. The Smart Card makes tracking possible, implying that we are provided with more accurate information on the exact number of beneficiaries which eliminates fraud and accounting error of any type."

Commenting on the project, Deputy Governor of the state who is also the Commissioner for Education, Titilayo Laoye-Tomori, said: "This is indeed a significant milestone for the State of Osun because without accurate data, a holistic transformation of the education sector in Osun may remain elusive. Issuance of smart identity cards to all public school students will ensure that we have accurate data for use in updating our education strategy and sustain our pragmatic work-plan to ensure overall policy success. In no small measure, the smart identity card will also ensure accountability to government by students of public school as it makes it possible for schools to track attendance."

Also speaking on the occasion, Managing Director, Chams Plc, Demola Aladekomo, said: "The Osun Smart ID card provides biographical and biometric identification of public school children from elementary schools to middle schools and high schools, equipping government relaible demographic data of the student population in the state. This certainly improves planning, distribution and allocation of educational resources in alignment with population size, and the unique needs of students and schools across the 30 local government areas of the state. It will also aid the judicious use of government resources and improve budgeting, while also providing accurate data that will lead to the enunciation of more transformative policies."

Full deployment of the scheme points to the government’s commitment to its 2011 education policy which sought an integrative and ICT enabled approach to the education of children and youth in the State.

The policy evolved from the Osun Education Summit held also in 2011, and it has been described by local and international stakeholders and education regulatory bodies as a comprehensive and holistic response to the deterioration of public school system in the state.

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