Lagos – Barely five months after the completion of reconstruction work embarked upon by leading telecommunications services provider, Airtel Nigeria at St. John’s Primary School, Ijebu-Igbo in Ogun State, enrolment figures at the school have continued to soar.
School Head Teacher, Mrs. Victoria Boyejo who revealed this recently while speaking on recent developments in the school said it had been experiencing a substantial rise in enrolment figure occasioned by the renovation work done by Airtel Nigeria.
Her words, “The population of the school has increased greatly as a result of what Airtel did here. We were many, but not as many as we are now.
Presently, we have about 900 pupils. At first it was 775, and then 800, and all this began when the people here started to see what Airtel is doing.
It is good to have facilities. Now, parents withdraw their children from other schools and bring them here, even those who live far away from this neighbourhood.”
Airtel’s CEO, Segun Ogunsanya, expressed delight at the development saying that “one of the expected multiplier effects of our intervention is not only an increase in the population of pupils, but also an upsurge in interest in education about young boys and girls in the area.”
Ogunsanya added that, “as was the case in Lagos, where government reacted to Airtel’s Adopt-A-School pilot scheme in Ajegunle, by rehabilitating several schools in the area, we forsee a situation where government and indeed public-spirited organizations and individuals will follow in Airtel’s steps to strengthen the standard of foundational primary education in the state”.
Airtel Nigeria adopted the school mid 2012 under its CSR-driven Adopt-A-School initiative and immediately embarked on the urgent task of rebuilding one of the dilapidated blocks of classrooms and offices for the head teacher and the teaching staff.
The first phase of the work was completed last December and commissioned on May 9, 2013 by the wife of the Governor of Ogun State and Chairperson, Mission to Rebuild Ogun State (MITROS), Mrs. Olufunso Amosun with notable support from the Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of Airtel Nigeria, Segun Ogunsanya, Ogun SUBEB, traditional rulers and Government functionaries.
In addition to renovating the blocks of classrooms and staff offices, Airtel also provided, and will periodically provide furniture, school uniforms, teaching aids, school bags, curriculum and non-curriculum books intended to boost literacy and ensure that the pupils achieve sound foundation in education.
Airtel’s transformation work at St. John’s Primary School is one of the company’s pan-Nigeria social investment projects aimed at uplifting the standard of primary education in Nigeria. The company, since entering Nigeria late 2010 after acquiring Zain networks limited, has made great efforts to provide and facilitate the provision of qualitative primary education to the less-privileged.
The Adopt-a-School initiative is part of Airtel’s umbrella CSR program which focuses on the education of underprivileged children in line with the United Nations Millennium Development Goals of universal basic education. It also seeks to enable focused work in the Corporate Social Responsibility arena through the adoption of abandoned schools as primary concerns.