By; MOHAMMED KAWU, Bauchi.
State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB) in Bauchi has attributed the children out of school syndrome to socio-economic challenges, religious misconceptions and socio-cultural beliefs.
The board chairman, Professor Yahaya Ibrahim Yero also gave insurgency, as in the case of Northeast, and loss of confidence especially the preponderance of educated but unemployed youth as other factors of the pattern.
Professor Yahaya Yero, at the flag-off of State-wide 2016/2017 Enrolment Drive Campaign at Yaba village, about 230 kilometers away from the state capital in Gamawa Local Government Area, stressed the need for the government to sensitize the public on the need to enroll children into school.
Yero said that about 8.7 million children nationwide were said to be out of school, which he hinged to the National Enrolment Drive Framework of the Federal Ministry of Education.
“The situation is more serious in the Northern states more especially in the North East region to which Bauchi state belongs”, he said; hence the state government’s sensitization of the public on the need to enroll children into school.
The SUBEB chairman explained that it is the failure to enroll children into school that gave birth to social vices which are extravagantly exhibited by youths in every nook and cranny of the society.
To provide free and compulsory basic education, he revealed, the state government has awarded contract worth N3.6 billion for the construction/renovation of classrooms and supply of furniture to schools across the state.
Professor Yero stated that the government has also embarked on training and re-training of teachers, head teachers, as well as providing support to School Based Management Committees (SBMC) through collaborative efforts with other Development partners.
Governor Mohammed Abubakar has while flagging off the campaign said that education is a crucial factor of ending global poverty as, according to him, with education employment opportunities are broadened, income levels increased, and material and child health is improved.
Represented by the Special Adviser on Education, Mohammed Abdullahi, the Governor explained that government is geared to re-shape the entire education sector especially towards improving access as more schools will be established and thousands will be renovated to give opportunity for enrolling school aged children.
He recalled that in 2013/2014 UNICEF conducted school mapping in only six LGAs in the state namely Alkaleri, Ganjuwa, Shira, Ningi, Toro and Zaki which exercise covered 201 selected schools including both primary and junior secondary schools.
Accordingly, the exercise had 696 catchment communities across the six LGAs with a total of 232, 696 children within the age-groups of 3 and 18 years comprising 128, 518 male and 104, 178 female, with a total of 58, 530 children – 31, 010 male and 26, 620 female were listed as out of school.
He therefore directed all Local Government Councils in the state to conduct enrollment campaign to ensure that school aged children in their areas of jurisdiction are enrolled into schools.
By; MOHAMMED KAWU, Bauchi.