Nigeria’s education sector paralysis is not just funding. Our incentives are wrong. University professors strike largely yearly for more funding. I am not aware of any strike involving primary school teachers who go at minimum wage between $50 to $90 monthly. Our current trajectory will not help the nation.
China has 99% primary education enrollment with less than 10% university attainment. They put all the good money in primary education. America does the same where primary and secondary are largely free. But in Nigeria, we flip it, taking care of few to the detriment of many. Why should a professor be paid $2,000 per month when a primary school teacher cannot even get $90 monthly? The most important education is primary education. Yet, from state to federal levels, Nigeria continues to pump more money into universities, leaving primary and secondary severely underfunded.
The U.S. and China will subsidize primary and secondary education making both largely free. For the university, you are on your own: take a loan or stay home if you cannot afford it. In Nigeria, we flip it; subsidizing university education and in the process deny millions the abilities to read and write.
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