Kayode Idowu, Maiduguri
Borno State Governor, Prof. Babagana Zulum, has directed officials of the state Ministry of Education to ensure that owners of substandard private schools are brought to justice.
The governor said he would not stand to see parents and guardians exploited by private primary and secondary school owners, who are without the capacity to impart knowledge in students, and directed inspectors from the ministry to pay visits and assess the quality of all private schools in the state with a view to identifying substandard ones.
Zulum gave the directive in response to the recommendation of a keynote speaker, Alhaji Mohammed Adam, at the inauguration of the Ansar Academy in Maiduguri on Monday.
Adam had called the government’s attention to the existence of substandard private schools in the state.
The governor stated, “I have keenly listened to the keynote address by my brother, Mohammed Adam, and I was attracted to some issues he raised, one of which is a reminder of our responsibility to monitor the quality of private schools and not just public schools.
“In that regard, I have directed the Secretary to the State Government to notify the State Universal Basic Education Board Chairman, Dr Shettima Kullima, to deploy officials to examine the capacity of all private schools. The Board is given six months within which its officials will visit all schools to examine physical infrastructure, determine the quality and availability of teachers and check other relevant records.
“The Board will make recommendations to the government of Borno State. We will do our best to ensure improvement of standards, but where necessary, substandard schools that are beyond upgrade shall be closed.
“While we are making modest efforts in uplifting the standard of education in our public schools, we shall also be very mindful of the operations of private schools in the state. It is our responsibility to ensure the quality of education in the state.”
The governor thereafter inaugurated the Ansar Academy, a newly established private primary and secondary school in Maiduguri, as well as the Al-Ansar Radio.
Both the school and radio station were established by the Al-Ansar Foundation, a not-for-profit organisation founded by a retired federal Permanent Secretary, Dr Muhammad Dikwa.
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