Yesterday I was part of delegation from a sociopolitical group Ibani G30—in Bonny Island to undertake a STEM tour of primary and secondary schools to talk to the students about the relevance of STEM for their future. We also held mental math contests and encouraged their teachers to keep up the good work.
As we went around to engage the students in various discussions, concerns about their welfare kept looming in our side conversations. The conditions we saw were deplorable.
A school in one of the villages that we went to had no math teacher!!! In the 21st century, this is a death sentence for a school! This same school produced great minds years ago who had stellar results in a STEM contest held across Bonny island and Rivers state. The children from this school walk through water to go to school. Their toilet is overrun by grass and who knows what else.
Another school on yet another village was a primary school for children of 3 adjoining villages. They pair primary 1&2 together. 3&4 together 5&6 together.
The highlight of my day was a teacher in one of the schools in Bonny town who said my parents were responsible for him getting a university degree and he remembered them with great joy and respect.
A Nigerian educational reformer who is determined about effecting transformation in the sector had this to say when I lamented about the state of affairs in the schools.
“I complain less and refuse to accept mediocrity from our Government.
The unfortunate truth is that most parents won’t desire to send their children to schools such as these; therefore because of an accident by birth these children have to be subjected to this travesty. We must rise up to change this! We need to make a lot of noise about the state of these schools till it gets to decision makers.
It is time to stop millions of naira allocated for this purpose ending up diverted for various purposes.
Our Government must be held accountable for the abysmal conditions in which these children are in. The best these schools will do is to produce militants! Children undergoing this torture will turn round and bite the society that watched whilst this was going on.”
We also awarded prizes for the students who excelled at our mini STEM contests yesterday and recognized teachers who contributed a lot to their students growth academically.
Adetola Salau; Global Educator / International Speaker / Author/ Social Entrepreneur/ Innovative Thinker/Future Readiness Advocate/ STEM Certified Trainer
She is an Advocate of STEM Education and is Passionate about Education reform. She is an innovative thinker and strives for our society & continent as a whole to reclaim it’s greatness.