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The state of education in Africa’s most populous country is pitiable. The saddest part is that Nigerians thrive where education is concerned. It is no surprise that 60% of Nigerian immigrants in the U.S holds at least a bachelor’s degree. 

If education (especially informal education) is an essential part of our culture, why then does it seem difficult to build this important sector? Why is the state of education in Nigeria pitiable? How else does one explain the millions of children out of school? How else do we describe the poor standards of teaching and learning in the country? It is not enough for students to be in school, the question is, what are they being taught? What are the teaching and learning processes being employed? Should education be a huge concern in Today’s Nigeria?

In 2020, the West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) result statistics that were released claimed that only 65.24% of participants had credits in 5subjects and above, including English and Mathematics. This figure seems fair, and for some, it can be considered as good. However, can we categorically say that these students can defend these results under standard supervision? 

Our educational system has been designed in such a way that the most important things are not being prioritized. Having good grades are overly prioritized over acquiring knowledge. Mass cheating and special centres have also become the order of the day in many educational institutions. Parents are not making the matter any better as they specifically request “something extra” from schools, no matter the cost. Admission placements are no longer truly based on merits except for a few institutions. 

In addressing the question posed in the title of this write-up, education should indeed be a huge concern in today’s Nigeria. It is a fact that the problems of underdevelopment in each sector of the nation are intrinsically linked. It appears that every leader that takes the mantle of leadership has always had the improvement of education as an agenda. Despite this, there hasn’t been any major improvement and policy implementation in the education sector. 

Today’s Nigeria is characterized by increasing rates of insurgency attacks, continual deteriorating levels of security, banditry, kidnapping, corruption in our tertiary,  political and public institutions, misappropriation of allocated funds, child molestation, avoidable road accidents, increased perpetuation of frauds by our youths, extremism and over indoctrination, amongst other issues. All these problems are deeply rooted in the lack of enlightenment and illiteracy of many Nigerians. Do you know that there is a growing rate of banditry and terrorism? The perpetrators belief system is mostly founded on overzealousness, misinformed ideologies, false consciousness and illusion. All of which can be improved upon through proper education and enlightenment.

Education is the only solution to quelling unfounded and baseless decisions. This education should include both the formal, informal and traditional type of education. Moving past the aforementioned, the benefits of rebranding education in today’s Nigeria will be monumental. The literacy of millions of Nigerians will not only improve the development of the country but, will ensure sustainable and continuous growth. Education brings about stability to the citizens, especially youths, and this surmounts the country’s economic, political and social welfare. 

The situation of our education sector should propel discussions that will tackle ways to ensure that 20% of the children who are presently out of school globally are not Nigerians. The discussion should include how to get adequate funding, trained educators and the right people to implement the necessary policies to effect change in the country. A popular saying says, education is the movement from darkness to light and it is through this light we can restructure things in today’s Nigeria. 

Finally, it is important to understand that the power of education extends beyond the development skills or economic success, as it greatly contributes to nation-building and the destruction of development barriers.


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