World Bank Boosts Girl Child Education With N19.9trn Grants In Five States | Independent Newspapers Limited
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World Bank Boosts Girl Child Education With N19.9trn Grants In Five States

Posted: Mar 9, 2016 at 1:20 am   /   by   /   comments (1)

Apata Oyeniran

Girl child education in the northern part of Nigeria remains the worst in the history of the country’s education landscape.

In Nigeria, many children do not attend school because their labour is needed to either help at home or to bring additional income into the family.
The reality of the hardship imposed on Nigerians by the failing economy has led to the withdrawal of children from school by families that cannot afford the associated costs of sending their children to school such as fees, uniforms, textbooks and other expenses.

The girl-child has been proven to be at a more disadvantaged position when it comes to going to school and report has it that girls have the highest percentage of out-of-school children in the country.

According to a UNICEF report, 40 per cent of Nigerian children, aged 6-11, do not attend any primary school with the northern region recording the lowest school attendance rate in the country, particularly for girls.

The report indicated that educationally, the gender gap between girls and boys remains wide as the proportion of girls to boys in school ranges from 1 girl to 2 boys to 1 to 3 in most states.

Female illiteracy, adolescent girl marriage, under 15 girls’ marriage and highest risk of maternal death and injury is on the high side in specific states of the federation.

Katsina, Kano, Kaduna, Jigawa, and Sokoto will be part of the five states in North-West listed to benefit from the world bank grant to boost girl child education in that part of the country.

According to the World Bank Senior Education Specialist, Dr Tunde Adekola World Bank has set aside N19.9trn ($100 million dollars) grant to five states in the North-West to improve girl child education under the Nigerian Partnership for Education Project.

Tunde, who made the disclosure on Tuesday in Katsina at the inauguration of the project, said that the grant was provided to support the education of children, especially those at the rural areas to have access to qualitative education.

The historical antecedents of the poor girl child education in the north can be linked to the development of education with Christian missionary activities in Nigeria.

While politicians and successive administrations have failed to address the challenges headlong, a study revealed that parents place significant emphasis on religion, social and economic factors as factors militating against improved education of the girl child education in Northern Nigeria.

Though, Northern politicians might consider the education of every Nigerian citizen desirable, but they are confronted with the reality of prevalent religious and social practices.

The government might make schooling compulsory for both sexes, however, this decision will probably have to be postponed until sufficient classrooms are built, teachers are trained and methods of enforcing the law can be found.

Speaking further on the grant, the World Bank representative said that the World Bank would strengthen the school management system to improve the quality of education in primary schools.

The World Bank official commended the five benefiting states for providing an enabling environment and necessary teaching materials in schools.
He explained that the World Bank would collaborate with other developing agencies such as UNICEF, UNESCO and DFID for successful implementation of the project.