It is Confucius (a philosopher) that said “If your plan is for 1 year, plant rice, If your plan is for 10 years, plant trees, If your plan is for 100 years, educate children. Education is undoubtedly the launch pad to a more successful, more productive and more prosperous future. Research has shown that Education is a powerful driver of development and one of the strongest instruments for reducing poverty and improving health, gender equality, peace and stability. It is a widely known fact that no country can develop and progress beyond the level and standard of its education. Because it comes with high social and economic benefits as it remains critical to global development and human welfare in every society.
However, schooling without learning is not just a wasted development and opportunity, but also a great injustice and wickedness against children and young people. Basic infrastructure, teaching and learning materials are lacking and in short supply all over the country most especially in the rural communities. Nigeria has 13.2 million out of school children- the world’s highest number. Unfortunately about 60% of out of school children are girls and many of those who do enroll drop out early. Children under 15 years of age accounting for 45% of the two hundred million Nigerian population. 20% of young adults in Nigeria who completed primary school can’t read while millions of children cannot read or write. It is sad that while globally out of school children have decreased, it has increased in Nigeria thereby facing the prospect of lost opportunity and lower wages in later life because of failure to acquire basic Education
Importantly, addressing the challenges of Basic and Secondary Education like early childhood development, out of school children, girls education, skill development, etc without addressing its infrastructure is a lip service and deception because infrastructure is critical to identify the abnormalities and fracturing lasting solution.
Our organization is determined to bring out of school children into the classroom, to increase access and improve quality learning as well as getting children motivated and prepared to learn because every Nigerian child or youth deserves to achieve their full potential and the quality basic education is key to unlocking it. There is no doubt that education eliminate extreme poverty and create shared opportunity and prosperity.
Mr Mathias Ezenwaka,
Executive Director, NAIDAT