Recent statistics from the World Bank has disclosed that 70% of 10-year-olds in Nigerian schools cannot understand a simple sentence or perform basic numeracy task.
Chief of UNICEF Field Office Kano, Mr. Rahama Rihood Mohammed Farah, disclosed this at a 2-day media dialogue organised by the United Nations Children’s Fund, (UNICEF) in Kano on Friday, April 8, 2022.
TheFact Nigeria gathered that, classes in Nigerian government schools, are usually over crowded. Therefore there was need to create more classes to enable the teacher monitor each child’s progress.
Mr. Farah who was represented by the Officer-in-Charge (OIC), UNICEF Kano, Mr. Elhadji Issakha Diop noted that Nigeria was facing a learning crisis in which learning was not taking place, even for children who were in school.
Highlighting solutions to the crisis, he explained: “According to the World Bank, Nigeria is experiencing a learning poverty in which 70 per cent of 10-year-olds cannot understand a simple sentence or perform basic numeracy task.
“To address the challenge, achieving basic learning outcomes at the foundational level of education is key. It is clear that to improve learning outcomes in Nigeria, achieving basic foundational skills at that level of learning cannot be overemphasized”, Farah said.
He further disclosed that UNICEF was supporting the Government of Nigeria to improve Foundational Literacy and Numeracy through tailor-made, teaching learning practices, such as Teaching at the Right Level (TaRL) and Reading and Numeracy Activities (RANA).
Similarly, UNICEF’s Education Manager, Mrs Manar Ahmed pointed out that low Public spending on education, unqualified teachers, bad classrooms and lack of implementation of the National Policy on education were the reason the country was staggering behind in impactful learning.
To improve the education in the country, Ahmed said there was need to increase public finance to education, invest in not only training teachers but having an all round approach including progress assessment.
On implementation of the National Policy on Education, she said: “It is not that Nigeria lacks the right policies in place to address the learning crisis that we have but we are saying that still Nigeria is facing a staggering learning crisis with learning outcomes in Nigeria being one of the lowest globally.
“You have to learn to read to read to learn. If children do not learn to read, they will never be able to learn”, she added.