…Says ‘no common entrance, no JSS 1′
By Ndahi Marama
Maiduguri—Governor Babagana Zulum of Borno State, has pleaded with 84 principals of public secondary schools in the state, to honestly tell him the true situations or challenges confronting secondary schools in the state , rather than covering-up for fear of victimization.
The governor spoke when he hosted 84 principals of all public secondary schools in the state at the multipurpose hall of the Government House in Maiduguri.
Governor Zulum said the meeting was aimed at getting a first hand, undiluted information from the principals, on problems facing public secondary school system in Borno.
According to him, “I have been to several schools, and each time I asked, some of you principals found it difficult to explain the problems in your schools. I was later made to understand that if you tell me truth, you would either be transferred somewhere you wouldn’t like, or somehow be victimized. Please I beg all of you to tell me the truth.
“Let us tell ourselves the truth so that we can improve Borno’s public education from where we are now. I am pleading with you to please be upright, be honest. Education is the bedrock of any development. Without functional educational system, we shall continue to experience this Boko Haram insurgency in Borno. Look at the kind of students we are graduating from our public secondary schools, most of them do not qualify for admission into universities, even those who get admitted find it very difficult to cope. I assure you that telling me the truth will not lead to anything happening to any of you by God’s grace.
After listening to the 84 principals, Zulum directed them to write down all the problems they listed and more if any, for submission to him within one week.
The governor also directed the immediate reintroduction of the common entrance examination at primary six level.
Zulum also directed the enforcement of a qualifying policy that henceforth, only pupils who pass the examination by securing a cut-off mark, should be eligible for admission into the first year of junior secondary schools (JSS 1), as against giving admissions to all pupils regardless of common entrance criteria.