There was dire need to educate and produce technical teachers in Nigeria after the termination, in September 1967, of the Special Fund Project of the International Labor Organization (ILO) for the training of Technical/Vocational educators. This need was earlier highlighted in the Gailers’ Report of August 1964 titled “a National Plan for the Development of Technical Education in the Federal Republic of Nigeria”. The report emphasized that the establishment of a Technical Teacher Education institution was for effective manpower development of technology in Nigeria. Thus, the Federal Government established the National Technical Teachers College (NTTC) Akoka, Yaba, Lagos, as the first Technical Teacher Education institution in the country to award Technical Teachers’ Certificate (TTC) for professionals in commercial and technical education. In 1982, the name of the College was changed to FCE (T) Akoka, due to the expansion in curricular and courses being offered. That is with inclusion of Nigeria Certificate in Education NCE (T) programmes, the College became a full-fledge autonomous academic institution in 1986 with the promulgation of the Federal College of Education Decree No 4 of 1986 and as amended in 1993.
At inception, the College enjoyed the assistance of the United Nations Development programme (UNDP). The United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) was appointed as the executing agency on behalf of UNDP while the Federal Ministry of Education was the co-operating agency on behalf of the Federal Government. Consequently, the College was under the aegis of the Federal Ministry of Education, while assistance through UNESCO was in the form of tools, machinery and technical experts. The UNDP terminated its assistance and involvement in August 1974 retaining a skeleton staff of two (UNESCO) experts in craft techniques and electrical engineering who remained till early 1980s to complete the transition. When the College was founded in 1967, it was conceived as an institution to offer a one year teacher training course for candidates possessing recognized technical and commercial qualifications with appropriate work experience, who wish to become subject teachers in technical, vocational and commercial academic areas. The NCE (Technical Education) and Programmes were established in 1968 and 1970 respectively, to train secondary school leavers to become teachers of technical/commercial subjects.
The College moved to its permanent site, along St. Finbarr’s College Road, Akoka in September 1975, after eight years of temporary sojourn at the campuses of Yaba College of Technology and Yaba Trade Centre. It now occupies a land area of about fifteen acres in the neighborhood of Akoka with all levels of educational institutions (primary, secondary and tertiary) very well known. Later on, NCE Vocational and Science education programmes were included in 1992 and 1999 respectively. The conglomeration of these courses in Science, Technical and Vocational Education and Training (which in conformity with Section 7 of the National Policy on Education), makes this institution a complete and specialized College in the disciplines that should be most appropriately upgraded, to degree awarding institution like a University of Agriculture and Technology. The physical facilities on ground include an Administrative Block, Classrooms Block, together with a three-story Classroom Complex and Lecture Theatre. There are workshop facilities for Electrical/Electronic Technology, Auto-mechanics, Metalwork, Woodwork, Fine and Applied Arts, Computer, Home Economics, Agricultural Science, Building Construction and Business Education.
There is also a Centre for Education Technology (CET) with facilities for close circuit television. The current level of workshop facilities and other essential physical structures, will contribute to the quality assurance and, production of high competent graduate teachers of Science, Technical and Vocational education and training. Six halls of residence are in place for students’ accommodation. There is a hostel complex under construction. There is also an ongoing radical expansion of facilities and infrastructure especially from the contributions of ETF, Federal Government Intervention and Africa Development Programmes in the College. The philosophy of the Federal College of Education (Technical) Akoka, as reflected on the logo of the College is “Knowledge, Skill and Service”. The implication of this is that education in the College is together and at once functional, qualitative and sensitive to national requirements. Thus, students are trained to have a thorough mastery of both theoretical and the practical aspects of their major teaching subjects.
Apart from laboratory and workshop practices, students are exposed to sixteen weeks experience in industrial settings. Furthermore the College has always supported curriculum reviews to produce the type of technical teachers that may be needed for the economy, from time to time. The philosophy has been fulfilled by the Colleges’ creditability to the National and International acclamation for about forty-three years. It therefore deserves an upliftment to a degree awarding institution as a mark of further recognition.