Foreign Support Boosts Girl Child Enrollment In Primary Schools In Kano, Jigawa And Katsina States
By Hadiza Ado Jinta
The role foreign support plays in the improvement of enrollment of the Girl Child into Primary schools can be over emphasized.
In Nigeria especially in some states of the North west Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) of the United Kingdom has offered tremendous support on girls’ education which has started yielding positive results in terms of girls enrollment in primary schools.
As part of the support the United Kingdom has continued to show exemplary leadership by funding the Girls’ Education Project (GEP) considering that poverty in any society cannot be utterly eradicated without paying critical attention to child education, particularly girls.
The attention on girls’ education is premium and Important , it is believed that when a single girl is been educated in a society it is just like offering education to the whole society due to the impact her education would play in building a better society.
Consequently common gender norms continue to put girls at a disadvantage, which lead their drop out of school at higher rates as well as engage in harmful practices such as child marriage
Some of the obstacles that became barriers to the education of the girl child includes poverty, cultural norms and practices, poor infrastructure, violence and fragility, and many others.
To curtail this menace of school drop out of the girl child interventions and support needed to be provided to states and local governments with the of providing working materials in primary schools so that Both the pupils and the teachers would have a conducive atmosphere of working and learning.
Meanwhile the FCDO-funded interventions, access to education for girls is gradually being expanded, resulting in no fewer than 1.4 million girls currently having access to education in northern Nigeria. The intervention on girls’ education in Nigeria termed GEP (Girls’ Education Project) which is presently at the third phase is comparatively yielding positive results.
In Kano State, for example, through GEP-3 funded by FCDO, 300 SBMC members have been trained, and selected schools have developed School Emergency Preparedness and Response Plans to mitigate the impact of potential and actual threats on schools.
The female enrolment ratio according to NPA/UBEC Survey by grades (2017/18) shows that girls’ enrolment and sustenance in schools are gradually picking up through the interventions. UNICEF, with funding from FCDO collaborates with the government in building the capacity of School-Based Management Committees (SBMCs) and Community-Based Management Committees (CBMCs) on enrolment drives, school safety and security, and to make communities more resilient. Also, the unique integrated approaches – involving mothers as well as girlsfor- girls is creditable.
FCDO and other development partners like UNICEF needed to be commended for their tireless efforts in providing adequate support to primary schools which resulted to high increase in the girl child enrollment .