School na scam jare!”. This is a very common saying amongst Nigerian youths. The economic meltdown is telling hard on every Nigerian and the youths have not been spared in this case. There are few available jobs waiting for them upon graduation from tertiary institution. The so called available jobs are now secured on the basis of who you know. Many young Nigerians find themselves studying a course they have no passion for and eventually end up not using their university/polytechnic certificates to earn a living. In the exact words of a friend “School is important but connection is importanter. In other words, he meant to say that connections and network are more important than the BSc, HND, MSc certificates. Does this justify the saying that School na scam?
There are several inadequacies in the Nigerian educational system. The teaching and learning methods are not evolving with the requirements of the labour market in the 21st century. Students are not directly trained for the labour market. Lecturers and tutors in many institutions still use old handouts and lecture materials, classrooms and lecture theatres are begging for renovation. It not uncommon for one to spend five, six years in school for a four-year degree programme due to the incessant internal and external strike actions. Is this enough to conclude that School na scam?
Several nations of the world are dissatisfied with their educational system including the United States of America and there is ongoing work across the globe to ensure that education meets the requirements of the ever-changing society. School should be tailored towards solving societal problems but this is not the case in the Nigerian context. There are several things that would fail when put in the Nigerian context of things! After all, the winner of Big Brother Nigeria, a reality TV show of 30 days gets much more money than the best graduating student of a Nigerian University who spent (5+xyears) studying in the university. Well, the same is the case in the western world too. Can we safely say that School na scam in the Nigerian context? We should see the bigger picture here.
Can you imagine a society without engineers, pilots, lawyers, journalists, geologists, bankers, economics, researchers, scientists, agriculturists, biologists, doctors etc.? These professionals are necessary in every society and these professionals are products of the school system. It is almost impossible in this generation to become any of the aforementioned without going through a structured school system. It is noteworthy to state here that there is a form of enlightenment that comes to individuals in school no matter how little it may be. Hereby it is left for you as an individual to turn this form of enlightenment into productivity. There are several things learnt everyday in the school system as individuals are taught on a wide range of subjects at the initial stages. In the words of a professor ‘’You might never know when and where you might use these things you are taught. This is the reason you offer many courses”. I pondered upon this statement several times and realized the fact that he had a point. A friend of mine who is an engineering student offered a course that has to do with “computer programming”. According to him, he wasn’t taught well and he performed woefully in the course but it sparked up his interest in programming and today he is a software developer though he graduated as an engineering student. It is very important to be versatile and not to be bound by what is taught in class. If this young man in mention relied solely on what was taught in the classroom, today he would not have become a top software developer. The school system might by undergoing some challenges which are not unsolvable. There are several individuals who passed through this school system and became great men worthy of emulation. It is not unusual for Nigerians to blame the government and the lecturers on this matter. I doubt if one would get up to ten percent of the students that are willing to return to their institutions as lecturers in the near future.
Yes, I agree that there exist a plethora of problems that the formal educational system is facing. The panacea to this begins with you. Great countries of the world were made by their strong formal education system. With these few points of mine, on the broader scale I can safely conclude that School no be scam.

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What do you think?

  1. School no be scam, yes, but the Nigerian educational system does not cater for the individual as a person, almost always going at the pace of the lecturer in charge, provisions are not made for the slow learners or those that do well in mostly the practical aspects, the theory is mostly what the university teaches and all these are important factors that makes the youth conclude that school na scam.

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