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The Dean of Studies, Cambridge College, Lagos, Mr. Azeez Olaide, has called for the re-introduction of A'level in the education system, saying it has made some tremendous efforts in the academic upbringing of pupils.

He said this at the valedictory service held on Saturday for the 2009/2010 set of the college in Lagos.

According to him, no nation can prosper without educating her citizens. He said, 'The future of a nation lies in the quality of her youth. It is on this basis that the college has decided to prepare her youth for the challenges of the 21st century. In a world where barriers are being broken and new frontiers are opening, it is only the well-educated that can thrive.'

He noted, 'Many of these pupils get As and Bs in their O' Level result, yet they will not be able to understand the simplest problems from the same subjects. Those who are science pupils among them hardly know anything about science practical.

'Being a sixth form college, we usually inherit youths who are almost without academic foundations. We change their orientation and re-create their academic foundation. The advantages of A'Level cannot be over-emphasised, it adequately prepares pupils for admission into university. It is simply an application of knowledge.'

Olaide, however, cautioned that should A'level be re-introduced, government should ensure that it is devoid of any form of corruption. 'The O'Level is not properly run, it has been abused. It is when we put the O'level right that we can work perfectly well on the A'Level,' he added.

A parent, Mrs. Busola Awoyomi, who spoke on the importance of A' Level, said it had made pupils more mature and prepared them for university.

She said, 'It has moulded the pupils for the university. You have a good foundation and some experience you will have in higher institution. My advice is that policy makers should understudy sixth form college and A'Level schools, and see the transformation in the life of pupils. If lots of pupils are doing A'Level, this JAMB issue will be minimised.'

Another parent, Mrs. Yinka Ogbonmide, lamented the poor orientation of A'level in the country. She said, 'A'Level in Nigeria has been known to be very poor and demanding. I recalled a lot of people counseling us against enrolling our children for it. We just felt that the rigour and the training they would go through would help to prepare them for what lay ahead of them.

'Parents should give their children the privilege to go through the A'Level and government too should inculcate some forms of A'Level in pupils. By the time they go through its principles, the pupils' maturity comes to play a lot here.'

Also, the 2009/2010 overall best pupil, Miss Ololade Osinubi, who said her success was based on hard work, determination and support from God, family and friends, supported the inclusion of A'Level in the nation's education system.

'With the level of the nation's education system, I think we need the A'Level system for Nigerian pupils to compete with their counterparts in other countries. The O'Level thing cannot take us anywhere. I urge government to re-introduce A'Level in our education system,' she said.

The best pupil in Business Management and Economics, Ogbam Ogbam Ekpei, said, 'I have gained a lot of experience and this has been a good learning process for me. Here, there is competition, so you have to really work hard to excel. I advise pupils to go for A-Level, it is a very good academic experience.'

The best behaved male pupil, Adedeji Oluwaseyi said, 'Before now I viewed the A'Level programme from different angles and mainly I saw it as just another examination needed for university admission, as the likes of TOEFL, SAT, and so on. The main fact about this programme is that, it is self- developing in the sense that it boosts reasoning because you are dealing with applied knowledge. It is also some sort of preparatory class for university as syllabus cuts across a lot of things.

'I will like to recommend A' Levels for everybody irrespective of their proposed course and university entry requirement. My personal findings have shown that top professionals have passed through it.'

This session, 35 pupils graduated from the college and awards were given based on their academic performance and good behaviour. Other recipients included, Eluchie Chukwuka, best pupil in Chemistry and Advanced Level Physics; Jesunifemi Ogbonmide, best pupil in Law, Literature and Sociology; Moses Emmanuel, best pupil in Applied Information and Technology; Moyosoluwa Awoyomi, best pupil in Advanced Level Biology; Adaora Momah, most academically improved pupil in Art; Oluwatodimu Bamigboye, most academically improved pupil in science; and Blessing Amade, best behaved female pupil.