Regulating Proliferation of Privately Owned School
One of the functions of government is the provision of sound, quality and free education to all citizens at both the primary and secondary levels.
The inability of government to cater for some of these schools necessitated the entry of private schools to fill the lacuna in some government schools.
The establishment of private schools by some incompetent proprietors or proprietresses solely for money making ventures have contributed to the fall in the standard of education in Nigeria.
The unrestrained proliferation of private primary and secondary schools in the country and the inability of government to effectively regulate their activities have continued to generate concern among stakeholders.
Some of the structures of these schools are make -shift with woods, and nylons which is not conducive for learning.
Not only that, personnel employed in some of these schools are either less qualified or not qualified at all, which invariably affects students outcome and performance in external examinations.
Majority of these private schools do not comply with the prerequisite on the establishment of schools and qualification of teachers.
Another problem with the schools is that most are unregistered and therefore not regulated, a development that allows them to continuously undermine quality academic standards.
Recently, Executive Chairman, Oyo State Universal Basic Education Board, SUBEB, Dr. Nureni Adeniran said the state government would close down all mushroom private schools endangering quality in the education sector in the state.
Also in Lagos State, the Director-General, office of Education Quality Assurance, Ministry of Education, Mrs Ronke Soyombo explained that about forty per cent of over seventeen thousand private primary and secondary schools in the state are approved by the state government.
Similarly, worried by the low standards of education and decrepit infrastructure in privately-owned primary and secondary schools in rivers state, Governor, Nyesom Wike, withdrew operational approvals of all private schools and directed them to seek fresh licenses within two weeks from the date of pronouncement.
This calls for concern among stakeholders. if the trend continues, the standard of education will continue to fall.
Government at all levels should make its schools competitive as it is done in developed countries to reduce the proliferation of privately owned schools.
There is the need for government to intensify efforts at sanitizing the education sector by ensuring that private schools owners comply with laid down prerequisite for establishment of learning institutions.
Furthermore, government should equally reduce the tax imposed on privately owned schools.
On their part, proprietors and proprietress of privately owned schools should comply with requirement, employ qualified teachers and refrain from exploiting parents and guardians.