More than 72 million children of primary education age are not in school and 759 million adults are illiterate. These adults do not have access or have the awareness necessary to improve both their living conditions and those of their children.
Some thirty years ago, education in Nigeria is free. During this period, parents can enrol their children in the public school system without paying any money. No application form fee, no registration fee, uniforms were provided free, same as books and other consumables needed for studying. The government paid examination fees and boarding students had it so good: they were well cared for (some did never dream of the kind of life they had in school).
Fast forward to the present, education is no longer free. Everything about education translates into money and a burden to parents. Public education is in shambles because in a way it has been monetized leading to mass failure on the part of the students. If one enrols his or her child, one is given a seemingly unending ‘bill’ to pay exam fees, registration fees, PTA fees, books, uniforms and many other illegal fees charged by unscrupulous education administrators. One possible way to improve education is the removal of a myriad of fees that are charged especially at primary and secondary school levels.
As a matter of urgency, the government should reintroduce the payment of registration fees for all students sitting for terminal examinations as conducted by West African Examination Council (WAEC) and National Examination Council (NECO). It is a good measure that the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) has reduced its examination registration fee.
Education plays a significant role in the lives of children. Poor education has a negative effect on the population of the country.