Update from Qudus' blog

Oct 20, 2009

The Mal-education of an education system

Me and Myself
The Mal-education of an education system

MYsELF: Bros how far… I can see you are idle; it’s unlike you, wetin dey again?

ME: I'm worried, I am thinking of writing an article, you want to join in?

MYsELF: How can I join in when I don't know what psychological disorder you are currently suffering from, Article about what?

ME: about the state of the Nigerian education system. Do you know they are still on strike?

MYsELF: Oh, of course I know they are still on strike, even if they weren't, what difference does it make? lol

ME: I'm serious and seriously thinking of an article that will present an opportunity for us to solve our educational problems ones and for all

MYsELF: Hmm my visionary bros. lol

ME: Common, can’t you see that the world over is looking at a proactive marketplace educational system that is cost effective. Look at the influx of the western kids to Asia for education for example. There is a grass root problem my man....I believe the solution to this problem plaguing our educational system involves a structured plan that may span years!

MYsELF: The question involved here is not free education, is it? Or spending another billions in a pretentious revival of our numerous educational institutions, well if you want me to join you, then I will be writing from the angle of alternative education, and the respect for other works of life, which has been denied due to the fact that mainstream educational institution that you eulogise have degraded their humanity.

ME: Alternative education? What the hell is that? I want to look at it from the angle of.... what is the value of education?

MYsELF: ok I like this, I can see we are not on the same page, is this education valuable to even start with?

ME: of course it used to

MYsELF: Used to be, good. now the question is who devalued it? I mean what is the cause of the devaluation, because the popular believe is to go to school grab the degree and leave...

ME: that's why the students will never study, they are not interested in learning, but they will do anything for the "paper", so does the exam council actually conduct exams, OR they just do wholesale failure… Because after all there will be a lot of malpractice. perhaps that is where we need to first start from, it is not about the kid that failed WAEC, how about their teachers, how are we sure the result were marked following the right rules. I think we only need to reinstate our educational system, it can still work.

MYsELF: you really tend to be a believer, let me ask you, what manner of education is it that makes it possible for a group of secondary school pupils to consider it their right, indeed their duty, to set upon their Teacher while invigilating their examination, put her to flight, pursue her into the home of the school principal where she has sought sanctuary, drag her out, strip her naked, beat her near senseless, place a tyre around her neck and set her on fire still breathing?

ME: These are fundamental questions from which the nation attempts to shy. Those who ask them at all ask them timidly, almost apologetically, and these are my concerns.

MYsELF: In short, the questions when asked at all appear designed to appease the butchers in our midst, the mind-butchers and the body butchers. Inevitably, a wake-up call is eventually administered

ME: A wake up call, but at what cost? It is clearly invalid to suggest that these pupils were victims of social scarcity, which they were revolting against social inequality that needed to be expressed by infliction of the most degrading kind of violence on a teacher.

MYsELF: Of course, these were not malnourished schoolchildren - on the contrary, they were extremely well nourished, and the question is, what kind of nourishment had they been fed? We speak now not of the stomach, but of the mind.I think it is high-time Nigeria began alternative educative measures aside conventional high school, public university, polytechnic, federal college, private university, etc. There will be no further innovation or evolution, if everyone keeps going to school to study banking and finance, law, medicine, chemical engineer and all the conventional studies.

ME: What is then wrong in that?

MYsELF: don't get it wrong, I am not saying people should not study all they pleases, but it is a development that needed to go hand in hand, if not, it is not a logical one. I'm talking about a philosophy of education that says the mind must be open, not closed, a philosophy that subjects all claims of human discovery or certitudes to practical enquiry… bros, until we begin to have and give recognition to special schools, we will still have more and more failure in most aspect of our human lives.

ME: Ahn ahn, na swear?

MYsELF: no be swear o, it is clear that we've all lost hope in our so called didactic system, if not, how come a foreigner or the "school abroads" who are often ill-informed about the grass root survival tactics of Nigeria get a job before the "naija for lifes". See, I can go on and on with my preconceived mono-anger... but I am not bothered.

ME: Ahh there is every reason to be bothered bros.

MYsELF: There is nothing else to expect in a society that celebrates mediocrity and Vanity Fair, enforcing tradition on the youth, religiously blind to the world order and yet forcing the kids to go to school, TO LEARN WHAT?

ME: hmm, but then…

MYsELF: listen, when you make a way, you should know that you must make an alternative route, if not, that way will but be filled with pot holes in no time, I ask MysELF, why is it that those guys studying computer science rush to NIIT with the slightest break or strike out of school, why is it that all language students troop to Alliance francaise or Goethe institute or other private linguistic institutions? bros, I’m not bothered

ME: ahh I am bothered, the country belongs to us all, most especially we the youths, we are the most active part of the society, our future depends on all these bullshit, and we are crying for that six letter words C.H.A.N.G.E; when are we expecting it, because am afraid it might linger onto generations to come.

MYsELF: It is only common sense that will put food in our mouth in this country. How sad common sense is however not common, we have moved away from our traditional arts and environmental educational systems to run after English titles - we prefer clothes that do not fit us.

ME: I agree with you, but for such article, ranting will not help, we need to present a feasible solution, even if it won’t make any difference, but let’s say what we have to say, for record purpose.

MYsELF: Bros there are no easier way for Nigeria to realize the rate at which she is negotiating the price of her coffin.

ME: Yes i know bros, it only surprises me that our decision makers don't know and yet not bothered, we can go on and on, but you know…

MYsELF: wait ...why not let's look at it from this angle, what if the students were listened to, I mean, give better attention to their heart and feel their need, many people will rush to a carpentry school only if they are promised a masters that will equate them with that banker, then, people will begin to learn with passion and it will be more fun, and we can begin to say GOOD bye to malpractice, because anyone who knows that his mind and passion is not in carpentry will quickly find another way, that is what happens in circus school, so perhaps you first come up with the evaluation of the mainstream education and I can conclude it with the alternative perspective of mine


MYsELF: You can have a good laugh for all I care; you also know the fight to convince my parents from stepping out of UNILAG where I was studying Mathematics and Statistics…

ME: My brother, that was not an easy one, was it only your parents, what about friends and the entire society.

MYsELF: So now you understand why i am standing by my point, stop forcing the kids to go to school... Nigeria has more traditional educational institutions even more that Britain that thought her.

ME: But bros Nigeria is a monstrous nation, we are obliged to have lots of educational institution.

MYsELF: That’s not the point, why is Nigeria so blind to the existence of football academies or dance schools that gives equivalent to first degree till PhD and above, whatever happens to fashion and catering schools, do you know that there are technical schools where people go learn how to be plumbers, bricklayer, painter, mechanic etc?

ME: Now you begin to derail from the basis of this article.

MYsELF: No bros, what we need is other kinds of learning that equate the traditional ones, my hypothesis is simple, the moment those numerous institutions begin to transform into practical spaces for alternative learning, things will begin to change, development can't be one sided you know, erecting schools is not development, when the human development is neglected

ME: Hmm, you are right I think people are tired of traditional forms, for example, If there are schools of carpentry that offers high degrees, we all will begin to feel respect for every human for what they do…

MYsELF: and a carpenter will cease to be regarded as a second class citizen because he will no longer lack basic education to at least read and write to further professionalise his practice

ME: but come to think of it, a school is not a place that should be seen as separate from our practical lives. It has to be relevant...the activities must prepare the scholar for a future in whatever he or she chose to study…

MYsELF: Yes ke

ME: …it must also be thought provoking abi

MYsELF: You are very on point

ME: ...but really the definition of school these days is just something else...why would the child want to go to school when he goes home with nothing? When those who read so hard end up being victims of the numerous strikes or abuse no matter how clever... the values of the schools must be reinstated...first and foremost.

MYsELF: and its meaning too… I mean once upon a time school applicants were admitted on merit, with or without scholarships, there was no seeing the Admissions Officer outside office hours, no invocation of shared ancestry and some of these students had become victims of sexual abuse by some of their teachers or lecturers

ME: Reality can be stronger than fiction, that is one of the most monstrous crimes that can be committed against vulnerable youth of either sex.

MYsELF: And most especially by those into whose care they have been entrusted. The teacher-pupil relationship is one of the most solemn responsibilities on which society is founded.

ME: and I do not think that if the school system works well there will be 83 percent failure in the last WAEC... shit, that's like fiction!!!

MYsELF: and for it to work I strongly believe these numerous higher institutions must merge or fold up, like the financial Institutions…

ME: This article will be awesome, l must confess, we have diligently proffer everlasting solution, only if it will get to the right ears and used as a yardstick to further enhanced and uphold the failing standard of education back home,

MYsELF: So now that we have all our points intact, let’s get down to writing.

ME: Bros shit, I forgot I have a deadline to meet up with, you can continue with the article I will join you.

MYsELF: Oh boy, you no serious at all, was it my idea? Don’t worry I will save It for you in my diary.

ME: lol


The texts in this dialogue are partly inspired by real life characters, either research based, online chatting or a real life conversation.

ME and MYsELF, is a series of soliloquy brought to you be the collective consortium of "MY Schizophrenic Thoughts"
The MST collective refuse to be responsible for any damage or whatsoever injury caused by the content of this dialogue.


(c) Qudus ONIKEKU