To tackle the menace of out-of-school children, the Borno State Government has announced a series of policies to curb the problem.
The state, which has been the theatre for the fight against the Boko haram insurgency in the recent decade, has about 1.8 million out-of-school children, according to Nigeria’s Multidimensional Poverty Index (2022).
Babagana Zulum, Governor of Borno State, announced that his government will employ about 5,000 teachers to tackle overcrowded classrooms.
Zulum said his administration had built schools and increased the number of classrooms in the state, but there are still many who are out of school, and the employment of teachers is one of the policies aimed at tackling it.
“We have built many new big schools and added more classrooms, but we still have too many students in each class. It’s a big problem. And even worse, there are many children who should be in school but are not,” he said.
“We will have schools in the afternoon, so students can go to school in shifts. This way, there will be fewer students in each class, and more children can enrol in school.”
He also discussed the need for teachers for these afternoon schools. He said, “We will hire more teachers to make sure every child gets a good education. We will train some of our existing staff who are not fully utilised to work in the schools.”
Zulum stressed the importance of security for the success of the afternoon schools, saying, “We will take measures to ensure the safety of students and teachers. Sometimes, classes may even go on until the early evening.”
In addition to the afternoon schools, Zulum mentioned other steps to improve education. He said,
“We will bring back practice exams in secondary schools, so students can prepare better for their final exams. We will also create special centres where talented and disadvantaged children can get extra support.”