A triangle has three sides and three angles. The most stable of all the types of triangle is the equilateral triangle which has all its sides and angles equal.
The beauty of this diagram lies in its equality in everything. If one side is missing, the object becomes a shadow of itself. If an angle depletes in percentage, the object will cease to be equilateral.
Line AB = Parents (who provides all necessary resources for their children’s education)
Line AC = School (which provides all the enabling environment and resources for good education)
Line BC = Students (who receives all that is provided to become truly educated)
Based on this premise, the responsibility of education lies with both the school, the parents and the students; with equal responsibility. But unfortunately, only two sides of the triangle are truly functional and in some cases only one side. It is in a few cases that we have this perfect combination. The weakest of the three sides is the base, hence the instability of the object of focus (children education). And wherever the three sides and angle function effectively and efficiently, the product (child) is always a testimony.
To foster excellence in education, all stakeholders must continue on the path of responsibility and schools must improve on their delivery to the admiration of both students, parents and staff; working collaboratively to ensure that the triangle remains intact.
The world has changed so much and many laws and policies make the attainment of this goal more difficult daily. The reality of the new generation of children we grow is that there must be a new approach to their education.
There is a paradigm shift from pure academics to skill-based education. The world is no longer looking for only the straight A’s which many students have consistently made. The world is more interested in whatever extra skill and talent they have and can evidently showcase in addition to the character and emotion that is good enough to elevate it. Based on this knowledge, we need to engage our students in all sorts of skill acquisition processes to enable them compete favourably with their peers from other parts of the world. Talent hunt is no longer a ceremonial event but should be an integral part of our daily routine in schools.
In our new age, we advocate more parental involvement in their child(ren) education (which is seemingly impossible in some cases as a result of work and business engagements) by checking on their school work at home personally or by proxy and collaborating with the school to monitor and discipline them in order to strengthen the base as well as ensure equality in our collective responsibility for their education.
In this age of legion of distractions, students need to be focused on the things that can benefit their present and future rather than frivolities that will eventually constitute a problem later. They should be taught to manage time well because time is life. They should be encouraged to schedule time appropriately for everything like TV, parties, travelling etc and parents should set the right priorities for them so that they will have no reason or excuse to default in their responsibility to the collective goal of their education.
Parents should trust the school more as partners in the progress of their children rather than quarrel and fight over every little matter relating to them. Overprotectiveness is a disadvantage to a child, knowing fully that the parents will not live with them forever; parents should allow the students some degree of freedom so that they can live in a world of reality rather than illusion. They should be taught early in life that every action has a repercussion and that there is a price to pay for every wrong decision. Allow the children to commit their errors and learn from them. Let them make their mistakes and correct them so that they will not be sorry for them later.
Principal, JNissi High School, Lagos.
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