Time For A State Of Emergency In Education By Anthony A. Kila

By Anthony A. Kila

An important event this week is the reopening of schools for most our children. They will be resuming today as you read these notes, and it is important we reflect on the state of education in the country. I say most, not all, because in reality many other schools opened two weeks ago in conformity to the British school calendar. Why are some schools in an independent Nigeria following the British school calendar? A passerby might ask.

The plain answer to such question will be “because some schools, called international schools, follow the British curriculum and their students sit British international exams.” If you are unlucky enough, and your interlocutor goes on to ask, “Why do some schools and students in an independent Nigeria follow the British curriculum and their students sit British international exams?” At that point your answer will have to be a painful “because these international curriculums and exams have values and recognition that most Nigerian schools can barely dream of achieving.” Thank heaven, political correctness will save you, and no interlocutor will ask if there is Ministry of Education in Nigeria.

Let us be clear, all parents have the right, even the duty I daresay, of giving their children the best education they can possibly find and afford. It is a private affair, so let no government official dare dream of meddling with this sacrosanct right and duty. Publicly as a country, we must, however, ask ourselves how the government and we as a people feel about the current state of our education. If you think having schools and qualifications that cannot compete with those of the rest of the world is just bad, you are wrong. It is a disaster. If you think having schools full of and producing students that cannot read and write properly and articulate their thoughts and aspirations clearly is sad, you are wrong. It is catastrophic.

If we want to proficiently address the state of education in Nigeria, we must first understand and accept that we have a serious crisis in our hands and consequently declare a state of emergency in the sector. I have not heard those in charge of the country’s affairs say so, but the fact is that nothing will work in Nigeria if education does not work; I wonder if they know that.

Luckily, but also sadly for us, the situation has not always been this way. There was a golden age in Nigerian education and it went beyond the 1960s when Sir Eric Ashby, a president of the British Association for the Advancement of Science and a master in Cambridge University, chaired a commission which concluded that education in Nigeria was as good as the best in the world. There was a time not too long ago when Nigerian schools, from secondary to university, were still considered amongst the best in the world. Just in Lagos, students from schools like Igbobi College, Kings College, CMS Grammar School, Queens College, Methodist Boys High School, Holy Child College, and St. Gregory College, were known to stand tall amongst their peers from anywhere in the world. Today they are shadows of their past. Something went wrong somewhere.

What went wrong, when and where?

We don’t know where many of those governing us went to school and we don’t know what experiences, inspirations or aspirations they had in their school days, so we can’t boldly ask them to go back there to revisit it and relive them for some hours; we don’t know if they were part of the golden age.

Those who went to those great schools and were part of that golden age need little remembering to understand that beyond the obvious mix of good dedicated teachers and a sound curriculum, what made their schools great was a shared ethos of greatness, a sense of belonging to something important and the continuous practice of taking responsibility for their houses, their classes, their schools, and their nation.

These combinations led them to actively participate in debates and quizzes, sporting competitions and civic engagements that were in turn good for the country as a whole.

Those who went to those great schools need little remembering to understand that they stood on the shoulders of giants, they will remember the roles of their old boys and girls in keeping their schools great. It is now their own turn to look back and give back to their schools.

Dear old boys and girls, there is an emergency out there, your schools need you and you owe them. Those who can, should find ways of giving some of their ideas, money and time back to their school to make it great again; today is the time to start.

As for those elected and paid to manage the education in the country, this is the time to revisit your roles and understand that you are dealing with one of the most important parts of the country’s life. It is time to renew your vows, and recommit yourself. As our children go back to school today, the minister of education and her team should decide what they want these students to achieve by the end of the year, identify what they need to achieve those goals, and put in place the necessary process to achieve them.

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If you feel that the

If you feel that the situation of education is quite grim in the country then they should take the steps to rectify the situation there. I was recently reading about this issue in a blog recently and I also found out 7 Tips for Mature Student there.

If there are problems in the

If there are problems in the sector of education then that could be rectified. Most education facilities offer online degrees now but they should consider having better risk management protocols for safety.

This debate is going on for

This debate is going on for decades though we all agree that the quality of education provided by those schools are far more better than most of our local schools. No Nigerian can deny the fact that a student who passed from British International School with high marks has the greater chance to get the best degree from the premier institution than the one who passed from a local school with same caliber.

This issue is critical indeed

This issue is critical indeed it is better to come up with solutions that would remove the disparities that exist between the two. So it is better to come up strategies for a successful negotiation which would lead to a better future for the children.

Education program should be

Education program should be designed to fulfill needs of every section of the society and there should be no disparities. In higher education field there is education program available to suit specific needs such as educational programs for veterans.

The government should take

The government should take steps to bridge the gap that exists. Teachers should put more focus on students and they should try innovative ways to help them learn they should also try taking help of special education intervention.

Those children who are not

Those children who are not taking admission in an international schools what is going to happen to them? Would they get an equal work opportunity? If not then the situation should change, schooling system should work better and should encourage teens with passion to perform better.

If they do not improve the

If they do not improve the quality of education there the kids would continue to suffer. They should also concentrate on providing better primary as well as higher education infrastructure. There are good job positions like healthcare positions, management positions available but without proper education these positions would remain unavailable to them.

They should take the steps to

They should take the steps to bring the golden age back to the country for the sake of the future generation. They should also arrange for adult education so that those who were forced to leave education midway for poverty can restart their education, they can now balance work and study.

The government should take

The government should take all the steps necessary to improve the state of education there. Now there are a wide number of opportunities available for students, a student can pursue physical therapy and start practicing physical therapy at home.

If there are faults within

If there are faults within the system then these should be rectified. Most of the students now prefer online mode as it is much more flexible than the conventional system. However, the focus is now on specialized education that would lead you towards plush jobs like CDC jobs.

Yes laboni indeed the

Yes laboni indeed the educational system would've suffered a lot if this incident had been publically debated.I don't know about you but as a student in this country I just want to get my graduate degree quicker and leave for my home country. It is too risky at the moment to study in Nigeria.

It is our wrong educational

It is our wrong educational system to be blamed for creating and nurturing such a dangerous trend. Parents are inclined to such institutions because they think there will be more job offers for their children if they can complete their education from a premier institute.

In many parts of the world

In many parts of the world the state of education is deplorable, there are areas where children do not even have a school to attend. If this continues then the future would be bleak as a considerable percentage of the future population would remain uneducated. But private education is much better especially the online version. From basic degrees to professional degrees like healthcare degrees for career in healthcare are available online.

There are some inherent

There are some inherent problems in the field of education and the authority should come up with some good solutions. Now the importance of education has increased and now to be able to land a good job you need to have a master degree.

Like Jools said, I hope that

Like Jools said, I hope that the situation will come to and end too. Nigeria produced some nice CEO's and some nice doctors; overbearing doctors but still good doctors that research and provide new cures for old diseases. I think that the first step to resolve this problem is to fix it yourselves.

The truth is that this does

The truth is that this does seem like a scheme, an attempt to conquer a nation through academic achievements. It's really sad when you come to depend upon another country to fix your issues. I hope the situation will come to an end someday soon.

Nigerian schools an emergency case

The state of our schools is the hand work of the ungrateful people we call our leaders today. in pre-independence and early post-independence era, public schools were the envy of anyone who cared to learn. Students in primary and secondary schools were properly fed in cafeterias, Universities all had good boarding facilities. After graduation from University, you had employment just for the asking, a house and a car to go with. That was what our so called leaders today have denied this generation of youths, 'leaders of tomorrow'. they steal in this country and instead of using those ill gotten wealth here in the country they stash them in foreign accounts and always roll the drum asking for our votes to continue stealing. No the state of our schools cannot be a responsibility for just the old boys and girls of those schools. It is a national responsibility that is dearest to us more than any aerotropolis we hear these days.

Education; State of Emergency.

A thought-provoking piece. I sincerely hope that those in the relevant sector are mindful of the consequencies of the ongoing rot in our educational system, and poised to begin to address the issue pragmatically.

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Well said! Education is as

Well said! Education is as important as electricity