Education is a process of imparting knowledge, skills, and values. The ultimate goal of education is to build and uplift a nation, and not bring its collapse. This process involves communication between two actors; the sender and the receiver. The sender here refers to the teacher who is the source of knowledge. The receiver is the learner who needs the communication (knowledge).
Education is divided into formal and informal. Formal education takes place in a school setting with effective learning resources and conducive atmosphere. The basic goal of formal education is to transfer knowledge from the source to the receiver. Informal education takes place mainly at home. Without informal education, formal education may be unsuccessful. In that regards, we see a strong connection between informal and formal education. Also, we see a mutual relationship between home and school or parents and teachers.
Despite the great number of academic institutions in Nigeria, the country remains morally and intellectually backward. Nigerian curriculum integrates religious and national values into studies at various levels of education. Yet, a high level of religious extremism, ethnic chauvinism, numerous number of social crimes, favoritism, embezzlement, fraudulence, and bigotry are still the order of the day. Understanding the collapse in Nigerian education requires a critical study of the actors involved in Nigerian education.
Reasons for Collapse In Education
The first to be considered is home. Family is the smallest social unit. The first agent of socialization is home. A child acquires informal education from home. Everybody loves and admires a well-trained child. On the contrary, an ill-trained child is reviled by members of his or her society. In reaction to some of his/her provocative actions, a popular statement is usually asserted: “You do not have home training.” This stresses the importance of home in the child’s learning and development.
How do we play our roles as parents? Many parents have evaded their responsibilities while some leave theirs in the hand of housemaids. For this reason, we do have instances of undisciplined children from disciplined parents. Such children grow to become a threat to their society. It is the responsibility of every parent to monitor academic, social and moral development of his/her child.
Another reason for educational failure in Nigeria is teachers’ poor commitment which affects the interpersonal relationship that exists in the classroom between a teacher and learners. Classroom relationship covers a wide range of academic, social and psychological aspect of a child. If a teacher is not motivated towards teaching, there is no how the learners will be motivated because we can only give what we have.
A teacher is like an emcee whose mood determines the mood of the audience. If a teacher is moody, his/her lesson will be boring. Therefore, teachers’ poor commitment contributes to the collapse of education in Nigeria. Some of the teachers’ poor attitudes are late coming to work, poor lesson preparation, lack of pedagogic skills and excessive reliance on traditional teaching methodology.
Other Factors That Contribute to the Collapse of Education
Apart from teachers’ poor attitude to work, the inadequate number of qualified teachers takes a big share in the collapse of education in Nigeria. Many Nigerian schools have an insufficient number of qualified personnel. Teachers are overladen with subjects and tasks. Overpopulation is rampant in Nigerian public schools. A class in public school may have five arms and each stream with a population of more than one hundred students. This also makes teaching-learning processes ineffective as teachers available may not be able to cater for individual differences.
Learners too contribute to this educational decadence. Many learners have the opportunity to attend standard schools but abuse the privilege. Many learners are fond of smoking, truancy and drug abuse, to mention but a few. It is very common to see students in school uniforms roaming the streets. Some are in school to take attendance as they remain passive in academic processes. Though teachers’ commitment determines the effectiveness of teaching-learning processes, learners’ attitude determines the level of classroom success.
Our government takes a lion share in the educational downfall of this nation. A great nation has a great plan for its education. A successful nation has successful educational accomplishments. A nation fails when the foundation of its educational structure collapses.
Year in; year out, Nigerian government allocates a microscopic amount to the nation’s educational development. Nigerian fiscal policy does not give priority to educational growth and the little funds provided suffer embezzlement and mismanagement in the hands of bureaucratic buccaneers at all levels of government and administration. This leaves many schools with poor educational infrastructures. It is indisputable that the education monitoring boards underperform in discharging their responsibilities.
The Effects of Collapse in Education
The aforementioned lapses have given birth to capitalism and collapse in education: a situation in which business people who have little or no educational background venture into school business not to develop the educational system but to make a profit. We have seen how schools with gigantic structures collecting a huge amount of money from parents but offering substandard education to children. In Nigeria, such schools have replaced education with celebration and pedagogy with entertainment.
Children who attend such schools have no educative story to tell but the story of wonderlands they visited, the films they watch and their sports event. They may find it difficult to recall previous knowledge but they are good at recalling their teacher’s birthday. Profit-driven schools have no academic standard or general codes of discipline. Parents, especially the aristocratic ones, dictate the standards for the schools.
Families who can afford the cost are increasingly quitting the public school system, moving their children to those private schools or sending them abroad. Data gathered and made available by the Institute of Statistics at the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization indicated that at least 257,000 Nigerians do currently study in the U.K., Benin Republic, Ghana, Canada, Malaysia, and the U.S. As a result, Nigeria made $1,66 billion in official foreign-exchange allocations to pay tuition between 2015 and April 2018, according to the Central Bank of Nigeria.
Solutions to the Collapse of Education
Education is the bedrock of development. For Nigeria to develop, the government should allocate more funds to the educational sector of the country and ensure its utilization effectively. Competent teachers with high moral codes should be employed to promote effective learning in various institutions of learning. Effective educational boards with disciplined inspectors should be set up at all levels of government to check all activities of both public and private schools.
Mass media should be used to enlighten parents on the importance of their parental roles and contribution to educational development. More educational programs such as spelling competitions, debates, essay writings, current affairs competitions, science competition, and arts creativity should be organized to direct learners’ interests towards learning and promote effective teaching-learning interactions. Adequate remuneration should be given to teachers and scholarship should be awarded to students. Teachers’ training and workshop should be organized for teachers in order to promote teaching efficiency.,