Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Nigerian Education: As Things Fall Apart...

It has been about two weeks now since the Joint Admissions and Matriculations Board reduced the UTME cutoff score for University admission to 180. To put it mildly at best, that is disheartening.

It is sad that JAMB has chosen to institutionalize mediocrity at such a time as this, rather than hold on to a semblance of educational excellence by maintaining the average score of 200.

Time and time again, the correlation between the quality of a country's educational system and the quality of life of her citizenry has been proven. It is even safe to say that we will not experience widespread growth as a nation - until we pay more attention to Education.

At this juncture, the onus lies on the Government to think hard and re-prioritize. It is not enough to clamour for an increased budgetary allocation to Education; the whole system needs a overhaul. Measures must be put in place to check the activities of School Principals and Administrators who do personal work on government time. Teachers who would discuss Nollywood films in their Staff Rooms rather than teach must be found, and punished; those who encourage cheating must be dismissed outrightly. Local Inspectors of Education must be made to take their work more seriously!

The truth remains that Private Schools still require some form of 'public' (Government) supervision. A lot of private schools who charge exorbitantly are understaffed and ill-equipped. Some form of rating Private Schools akin to Hotel ratings needs to be developed and made publicly available. Parents who can afford to pay these fees should be helped to make informed decisions - and get their money's worth.

Lastly, it all rises and falls on the family. Parents must help their children to see the value of qualitative education. They must teach them not to 'facebook' when they should be listening in class. They must evaluate their children's performance, independent of the teachers. They must reward excellence, and kick against mediocrity.

Seeing as children who are not properly taught end up selling their father's houses (Yoruba Proverb) - a qualitative educational system is better insurance for the future than the best managed Sovereign National Fund.

An article is enough for the wise.


  1. Hello Koye, I stumbled on your blog and I must confessed that I find it very impressive and inspiring. I have added you to my favourite list and be assured that I will be a regular visitor on your blog.
    I may not have the psychic power of the late legendary Octopus Paul but I can predict with the certainty of a watch maker that you are leading a life of significance.
    I doff my hat for you!
    ireti Ishola

  2. Koye:

    I just came across your blog today, and I must say that I am impressed with the content and also the way you write. Your suggestions were also interesting, especially the rating system for private schools. But I think that for the most impact, government / public school education must improve significantly.

    LOL @ teachers discussing Nollywood movies in staff rooms ... Na today?! I feel your pain on reducing the cutoff score to 180. That is NOT the way forward (and I suspect they know it too).