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Nigeria Education And Student Preparation For Life by pass4life(m): 3:35pm On Jun 08, 2015
Our children are the leaders of tomorrow. But with the kind of school system that is run in this country, how well are our students REALLY prepared for the realities (challenges and opportunities) of today and of tomorrow?

Being [young or] a student is both rewarding and challenging. And the challenges students’ face are tougher than they know and whether they like it or not, the choices they make to navigate through the challenges such as the deplorable state of our educational system can either make or break their future.

According to President Obama in the just concluding Young African Leaders Initiatives held at Town Hall, University of Johannesburg-Soweto, South Africa (The Guardian, July 2-July 4, 2013), he assert, ''In terms of human capital and young people, I think there is no doubt that the most important investment any country can make is educating its youths and providing them the skills they need to compete in highly technology advanced world economy—countries that do not do that well will not succeed. Countries that excel at training their young people are going to succeed.''

Base on this assertion by President Obama, most will agree that education is a means to human—personal, social, organizational and national—growth and development and it is fundamentally important to the success of our young students. But most of them struggle in our school system where they suffer in a mental and emotional toxic environment. They become the victims of a reality filled with low trust, adversarial relations, high pressures, and conflicting expectations. In fact, not only are they victimized by the environment, they are powerfully modeled by it. They begin to look at it and unconsciously absorb its obsolete and quick fix approaches and methods of learning—cramming their way through school, even through life—believing that life operates on a quick-fix system, where they end up becoming earners alone [rather than becoming learners as well.]

They develop a thinking that “there is no hope for me all I need to do is to earn my certificate and get out of this system or country,” believing that ideas do not thrive and rule in Nigeria. And with this thinking, most have lost hope about succeeding or making it in Nigeria as a student, even as a citizen.

Other issue is that, most of these students are not dreaming anymore. Those who read so-called lucrative courses graduates only to become beggars in the labour market; hunting for opportunities they are supposed to be creating from within themselves. Most are not willing to wake up to the responsibilities for their learning and lifestyle as well as their development and achievement—rather they expect to be spoon-fed throughout life. They don’t know that the power to revolutionalize their environment, to empower themselves and to see the opportunities calling for attention is within. Not to mention a student who will spend four or more years in tertiary institution only to travel abroad to wash plates all in the name of seeking for greener pastures. All these are as a result of ignorance—ignoring to learn and live the principles [of effectiveness] that govern the desired result [success that endures] they all seek in life.

What about the employers and business leaders who are in need of people who can think for themselves. People, who can take initiative and be the solution to problems, people who can build trust and get along with others, and solve complex challenges in teams without much supervision. Not to mention nations searching for that ONE individual who is unique and useful. That ONE individual who is an good reader, a great leader, a significant entrepreneur and a responsible citizen, who also have developed these traits to bring about change in his/her immediate environment and start in a little way to model the new Nigeria.

According to President Obama (The Guardian, Wednesday, July 3, 2013), he assert that, ''Countries that excel at traning their young people are going to succeed, because these days businesses can go anywhere. And one of the key criteria for any business is, where can I find outstanding workers? Where can I find outstanding people to manage a plant or manage my sales force? And if you have countries with high illiteracy rates or limited skills, you are going to have problems.''

Employers and parents alike know that, for the most part, our school system is not designed to consistently develop and unlock these vital human capacities. Because, the traditional three ‘Rs’—reading, writing, and arithmetic, the Basic Knowledge—are necessary, but not enough. What is needed is an Educational Resource Program [design with additional elements such as Applied Skills, Principled Behaviours and Integrated Tools] that is created with transformative and innovative approach, not created to COMPETE with the school system rather to COMPLETE like a ''newly wedded bride'' with the school system in educating the Whole-Person of young people by unlocking the potential [of every student, one at a time] to lead and live an effective [purposeful, passionate, productive and patriotic] life.

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