This post is going to focus on the government’s role and also present some shocking facts. As you might have noticed, my posts on education has been centered around the secondary school level.
I would be doing a guest post about tertiary education in Nigeria after this and I welcome as many inputs from different people as possible. Together let’s get the word out. The post on tertiary education would be a comparison of what obtains here and outside the country so that we can accurately measure where we are against where we ought to be. As well as suggest what should be done to improve that sector of education.
Now to the business of the day.
In my last post, I said I was going to write about an incidence that reduced the number of students I taught from 80 students to less than 20.
On resuming this third term, to teach my students, about 3 weeks after resumption, I enter the class and one of my students announces that she no longer takes Economics. You could tell my shock so I asked what that meant and then the other students explained that the curriculum had
You could not imagine the extent of my shock. This is third term and even if a new curriculum would be changed or implemented should it not be at the beginning of a new session? This leads to my discourse of the clueless decision makers at the helm of the affairs in Nigeria concerning this crucial sector.
So basically this new curriculum introduces subjects such as ICT, Entrepreneurship, Fish farming, forestry, soil science, etc (to replace subjects such as Agricultural Science, Economics, Biology and Geography).
I do not really have a problem with this new curriculum, the issue I have is with the way it has been poorly implemented and the way it has inadvertently made the students lazy, specialised and clueless at such a tender age.
Here is what I mean by the above. The new curriculum states that the science students should not offer Economics, Geography but should compulsorily be taught Civic Education. The Commercial Students are to offer Entrepreneurship and not do Agric but any of the new variants. Biology is no longer compulsory for them also. Furthermore, the Arts students should not offer Agric, Biology, Economics is optional and so on.
It is such a messed up situation because to start with these public schools do not have the facilities to teach the subjects that were in place with the old curriculum not to speak of these new sophisticated additions.
Secondly, is it not wrong to streamline students knowledge at such a young age, shouldn’t that be done at university? I know of many people that were science students that later crossed to study become Economists, what option do these next generation have if they have to be locked into a choice so early?
Thirdly, these decision makers have not even considered regular training of teachers as a priority, yet they introduce policies that their current manpower would be unable to implement.
So my point is this: can our government really look critically into Education and find more realistic ways to implement its grand policies? Also can all those at the ministry of Education both federal and state levels pay closer attention to their jobs and do it out of reverence for God?
I say this because of the alarming facts I am about to present. The state of Education in Nigeria is going downhill too fast and we need to brake and do a complete u-turn.
Here are some facts:
1. In the 2012 May/June WASSCE only about 40% of the students had the minimum 5 credits including Mathematics and English.
2. The country for the last two years has failed to produce any top ranking WAEC candidate. Ghana had the best three in West Africa for year 2012.