Education is the cornerstone of any country’s development. In fact, the region that has the most educated people is also perceived to have the highest standard of living. The current state of education in our country is a concern, but it shouldn’t be viewed as an obstacle to be overcome, instead it should be seen as a challenge to expand our horizons, unearth our potential and build something better for tomorrow.
Education in Nigeria is divided into myriad issues, including poor funding and consequently inadequate educational infrastructures, inadequate classrooms, poor teaching aids (projectors, Computers, Laboratories and libraries), and poor or polluted educational environments. We also have numerous social vices such as examination malpractices, cultism, hooliganism, and corruption in our school system. In order to see significant change in the educational sector, the government must re-address the funding issue. It is very important that private educational investors, teachers, and parents/guidance be reoriented to education’s goals. Any knowledge acquisition must be done in a pluralistic way.
In recent times, the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) released the 2021/2022 students results, which were abysmal. According to the board, 1,671,203 applicants sat for the test but 973,384 passed with scores to get into Nigerian universities. This means that only 14% of applicants achieved while 86% of those who took the exam failed woefully. According to the Registrar of Nigerian Universities, Prof. Ishaq Oloyede, each university is allowed to set its own cut-off mark of up to 220, but no one would be allowed to go below the agreed minimum marks of 100 for colleges of education and 100 for polytechnics.
Universities are considered to be centers of learning. It is an institution of knowledge. The tasks of each university include among others, developing human capital, conducting research and development, guiding student projects, and providing solutions to socioeconomic challenges facing the nation. People around the world are on strike to demand better wages and working conditions. Under this premise, the Public University Teachers Union has gone on strike since February 2022, calling for adequate funding for the revitalization of public universities, payment of earned academic benefits, university transparency and accountability. Settlements, promotion backlogs, renegotiation of the 2009 ASUU-FGN Agreement, and payments for integrated payroll and human resource information systems.
I know some of the challenges most faculty face in colleges. For example, infrastructure facilities at most public universities are generally poor. Power is erratic, most of the time water is not readily available and it can be frustrating. Again, most laboratories have modern analytical equipment such as atomic absorption spectrophotometers (AAS), gas chromatography (GC), mass spectrometers (MS), and high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). are not adequately equipped. When it comes to salary and benefits, it’s very disappointing that most of the faculty have been at the same salary for thirteen years and no raises. Most lecture halls and dormitories at these universities are nothing special. The auditorium is always full and in some cases the number of students exceeds the capacity.
We need a complete review and overhaul of the education system in Nigeria. Stakeholders and gatekeepers need a collective rethink, engaging the students at different levels in the process. Again, the country has to prioritize the future of the coming generation.
For more learning and preparing for external examinations, visit: https://edulite.org