The Need To Reform The Curriculum of Nigeria’s Educational System

The Need To Reform The Curriculum of Nigeria’s Educational System

Recently I published a post where it was disclosed that Kenya has included coding into the syllabus of primary and secondary schools in its country, which was what spurred me to write this piece.

The world as we know in this 21st century has shifted significantly, with so many technological advancements littered everywhere. According to an analysis by Mckinsey Global Institute, it disclosed that about 51% of job activities are highly susceptible to automation.

This indicates that automation is going to necessitate the redefinition of most jobs. Seeing all these predictions, research, and analysis from different institutions about the possible change in the workplace structure, one question that came to my mind is this. Why do schools in Nigeria still use an obsolete curriculum, void of relevant subjects and skills to teach school students?

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As the rest of the globe advances into the twenty-first century and capitalizes on technological advancements, as well as including relevant skills and subjects in their curricula, where does Nigeria, the “giant of Africa” fit into this equation?

Most of the things embedded in these curriculums of schools in Nigeria, have little or no relevance in this 21 century. In most schools at all levels in the country, you see teachers teaching the same subject that was taught in 1960, knowing full well that these subjects have no relevance in this present generation.

I am not in any way implying that the entire curriculum should be jettisoned because I still believe some subjects in it are still relevant. What I am trying to say, is that there should be the inclusion of several subjects and skills that have relevance in today’s world to be embedded in these school curriculums.

Problem-solving, creative thinking, digital skills, and so on are in greater need, yet they are deficient in these curriculums. I could recall when I was in high school where we were taught short-hand, only for us to graduate and discover that short-hand was never needed at any point in time to solve any problem. After seeing how irrelevant the subject was, I began to ask why it is still being taught in schools.

Truth is, some of the topics being taught in schools today will no longer be relevant in the nearest future. The government in collaboration with the Educational leaders in the country should come together to remove irrelevant subjects in the school curriculum to make room for subjects with future relevance.

Already, a lot of schools in advanced countries have begun to include relevant skills and subjects in school curriculums. In the US, 44 states have changed policies to recognize computer science as part of the academic core.

Today, we have a lot of careers that have been created which was not seen in the previous generation. While growing up, we had a conventional career path, where everyone wanted to be either a Doctor, Engineer, Lawyer, Banker, etc. Currently, the career option is now vast with so many inclusions. We now have kids who aspire to be coders, programmers, software engineers, Data analysts, etc.

Looking at the fact that there has been no inclusion of relevant skills and subjects in the Nigerian school curriculum, it will no doubt pose a serious challenge to school students. One negative impact it will have is that these students will be limited in so many areas, career-wise and skill-wise, which will leave some struggling to catch up with the already advanced world.

It is quite disheartening that after one is done with schooling in the country, they will have to go back to learn basic relevant skills that could have been included in school curriculums. Imagine a future where relevant skills are included, upon graduation, a lot of students will already be armed with relevant soft and technical skills to take up future work and as well create useful innovations that will greatly benefit the country.

Therefore, there needs to be a reform in Nigeria’s school curriculum being used to teach students throughout all educational institutions in the country. The curriculum requires a review that must be sustained, implemented, and assessed so that it remains relevant and responsive to 21st-century trends.

The role of Education in any nation is very pivotal to nation-building which is why students need to be exposed to quality education that will be relevant to the global world.

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