Florence Ugbem & Faith Igbudu
The Proprietress, New Age Academy Nursery and Primary School and New Cambridge Secondary School, both in Makurdi, Mrs Ene Stella Ofikwu has lamented the increase of unapproved schools in the state, saying it is contributing to the falling standard of education.
Speaking with The Voice, at the school premises in Makurdi, the proprietress maintained that if government doesn’t swing into action and checkmate the activities carried out in these unapproved, mushroom schools, then the standard of education will continue to depreciate, and in the long run pose a very big problem in the society.
Her words: “You just see a small compound with a sitting room and a school is being run there, with a large number of children in such schools. These children end up half baked with half knowledge being impacted on them and they will eventually become part of the society and in turn, bring out what they received from these mushroom schools and their performance keep dropping.”
Mrs Ofikwu gave other factors such as poor funding, constant change in education policy and over-taxation by the government as major reasons for the dwindling standard of education in the state and the country at large.
She stressed that the constant change of educational policy in the country is affected the standard of education, explaining that, each government when voted into power comes with one policy or the other, and when another government comes in, they come with a new policy just when schools are beginning to adapt to the previous ones on the ground. This, she said affects the running of schools.
She said the decline in the funding of education by the government and taxation poses serious threats to the quality of education.
She noted with dismay the inability of many stakeholders in the education sector to wade into the financial difficulties occasioned by the harsh economic realities on the ground which have resulted in cheap labour, poor facility or inadequate facilities that will enable or foster proper learning in schools.
She said that most proprietors make do with what they have and this has affected the general quality of education in the country.