Nigeria

Official: Why public schools in Katsina skipped third term

Governor Aminu Bello Masari of Katsina State has advised his colleagues to look for alternative sources of revenue apart from oil.

The Katsina State Government has said it is cancelled the third term of the last academic session in public schools in the state, so as to ensure that the students did not miss their external examinations.

The state’s Ministry of Education gave the reason following an outcry from members of the public and civil society organisations in the state.

The state government reopened boarding schools this week for the first time since December last year when schools across the state were shut following the kidnapping of over 300 students of Government Science Secondary School, Kankara.

Governor Aminu Masari shut down the public schools but reopened the day schools a few weeks later.

In February, boarding school students and staff were asked to resume in day schools near them.

Speaking with newsmen at the sideline of an event in Katsina Tuesday morning, the Commissioner of Education, Badamasi Charanci, an associate professor, gave the reason why the state government took the controversial decision.

He added that the decision was taken after due consultation with concerned parties.

“Let me remind you why we have even witnessed the closure of schools. We had the COVID-19 pandemic that bedevilled the whole world, kidnapping of students and other things. When we finished the assessment on the reopening of boarding schools, we decided to skip the third term for the whole secondary school, (boarding and day), in the state.

“We did that because we took into consideration that examination bodies like WAEC, NECO, NABTEB and even NBAIS would not wait for our students when the examinations are due. So, we decided to skip the third term to ensure that out students also participate in the examinations.”

Mr Charanci said this was not the first time a whole term was being skipped.

He said in emergency situations, governments at all levels are forced to make adjustments.

“Over 10 states in northern Nigeria are in the first term, so how do you want us to reconcile this? You want us to sacrifice all the students waiting to write their graduating examinations or what?”

When asked the measures the government was taking to ensure the lessons missed in the third term are covered, Mr Charanci said provisions have been made.

“We are specialised teachers. We have done this before and the results were good. We will use all the available options to ensure that the lessons are covered. We have prep, lessons, specialised lessons during break and team teaching. We will ensure that everything is duly covered,” Mr Charanci said.

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