The world recently celebrated International Day of Education with a reminder that without education, a person/nation’s future is bleak. The United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) proclaimed January 24 as International Day of Education, in celebration of the role of education for peace and development.
This year’s celebration with the theme ‘To invest in people, prioritise education’, was dedicated to Afghan women and girls who have been denied the opportunity to receive formal education. The theme reminds us about the need of not letting go of the chance to give a child the priceless gift of education.
Unfortunately, Nigeria is still faced with a challenge of a high number of out-of-school children where over 60 per cent of them are reportedly girls.
Nigeria has a total of 20 million out-of-school children-the country with the third highest number of children deprived of education, according to the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) statistics.
On the occasion of the international day of education, stakeholders who spoke to me urged the Nigerian government to give priority to education and make it inclusive for every child.
The Head of Mathematics (HOD) in an Abuja based school, Isaac Moji said education is a public responsibility and every child must be educated.
She urged the government to stick to its pledge of prioritising investment in education and educational transformation.
“There is a need for every child to have the right to an equitable, inclusive education. Sadly, this right is not a reality for all the children in Nigeria as many of them are out of school.”
Governments have been advised to ensure adequate funding and implementation of policies towards tailoring learning to students’ unique abilities and needs at all levels.
The National Association of Seadogs (NAS), Pyrate Confraternity (Lekki-Lagos chapter), charged stakeholders in the educational sector, the Nigerian government, on the need to double efforts in ensuring that quality education is accessible to all, especially children of school age.
Engr. Sunny Agbejuasun, who spoke on behalf of the association as the theme of this year’s International Day of Education goes: “to invest in people, prioritise education,” government and stakeholders need to be reminded that education is essential to the development and progress of any nation.
“Education is a fundamental human right, which is a catalyst for human and societal development. As a means of reinforcing this tenet, the UNGA adopted a resolution proclaiming January 24th of every year as the International Day of Education, in celebration of the role of education in peace and development,” he said.