The STEP team in Nigeria has selected three schools within the Southwestern region of the country to implement the pilot phase of the program; Fasola Grammar School, Oluponna High School, and Lead City International School. Fasola Grammar School and Oluponna High School are both government-owned schools, situated in rural communities, with the former located in a subsistence livelihood setting, and the latter in a market-oriented, mixed agriculture area. The third school is a private school, with not much land area for establishing demonstration fields but high levels of classroom and laboratory instruction.
The two government schools have sufficient land for agricultural practice on crop production and horticulture, while opportunities in value addition will be emphasized in Lead City International School. Oluponna High School has most of its graduates going into vocational fields while a small number of students further their education in Universities and Polytechnics. One reason for the small proportion of students furthering their education is that most of their parents lack formal education as well.
Secondary schools in Nigeria have compulsory agricultural training during the junior years, and then offer it as an elective during the senior years. Attracting more seniors to that elective becomes a target for STEP in Nigeria. Note that Fasola Grammar School is located close to Fasola Farms, a government farm settlement with agribusiness experts from the Ministry of Agriculture; and that Oluponna High School is adjacent to the OFFER Centre Institute of Agriculture that offers a National Diploma in Agriculture.
Each Country selected the various commodities that they will be training these students on, based on certain factors which include:
- Cycles of the commodities: Commodities with shorter cycles were selected (except cassava because of its large value chain options) This is because Students may get discouraged if it takes longer time is taken for production
- Viability: Profitable crops were selected to encourage the students and also to prove the profitability of Agribusiness
- Ease of set-up in schools
- Nutritional benefits
- Facilitator expertise