There is urgent need to restructure and transform the secondary school system in the country. This must be done if the objectives as stated in National Policy on Education for the education sector must be achieved.
Sincerely speaking, secondary education has been made to suffer a major setback in various angles simply because we forgotten the central role that it is supposed to play in the education process and development in the society.
Without mincing words, just there are three levels of government: Federal, State and Local Government where the state government serves as the centre of major economic activities, the fulcrum that holds the other two and just as there are three arms of government: The Executive, Judiciary and the Legislature, with the judiciary acting as the chief cornerstone holding the other arms of government in place.
Secondary education is the second in the tripod of education starting with from the Primary, Secondary and Tertiary stages in ascending order of magnitude.
Having done this analysis to show the significance of secondary school system in the education system, it therefore must not be allowed to suffer if we are serious about using education to drive national development as obtains in many progressive nations in the world.
As clearly stated in the National Policy on Education, secondary education has two distinct objectives which are: Preparing recipients for higher education and preparing recipients for useful living within the society. Do our secondary schools meet up with two wonderful objectives?
Are they providing the students with the vocational skills necessary for useful living if they chose not to go further on their education? The secondary school education has failed woefully in this area (vocation) partly because we have forgotten the reasons for its inclusion in the curriculum or we are ignorant of its benefits.
If more attention was given to vocation aspect of the secondary school education, the number of street urchins in our society would have reduced drastically because they would be in one vocation or the order even as secondary school drop outs.
Unfortunately, our secondary schools have suffered acute shortage of qualified manpower especially in specialized subjects such as Chemistry, Physics, Biology, Mathematics and English language. It also suffers acute shortage or complete absence of facilities (infrastructures) such as befitting classrooms, adequate furniture, properly equipped laboratories and modern day libraries as well as recreational facilities. I’m as surprised as you are that in this age of information technology, many secondary schools have no computers.
Also, there is the problem of general low morale on the part of the few teachers struggling to make sense out of the situation. In addition to this, incessant strike actions by the teachers to draw attention to their poor conditions of service have done a terrible damage to the already bad situation.
While this situation is more terrible in public secondary schools in states, the situation is not any way better in federal government colleges. Most of the federal government colleges lack proper infrastructure and have been hugely left unattended to. A visit to some of those schools will provoke one to ask several questions at the same time. Many of them look like abandoned buildings and this is one of the reasons we have been recording poor result from that sector.
It is very critical that attention should be focused on the secondary school sector. I believe that things cannot continue the way they have been if we want to have quality and value from our secondary school system, therefore, I call on the government both state and federal to initiate that will bring about restructuring of that sector of education.
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