Lagos denies pegging age for secondary school admissions

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Folashade Adefisayo, Lagos State Commissioner for Education
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The Lagos State government has denied multiple media reports attributed to it about determining an age of entry into secondary schools in the state.

Commissioner for Education, Folasade Adefisayo, who disclosed this in a statement, said the government was yet to decide on that, contrary to such reports.

While admitting that the government had already received correspondences towards doing so, Mrs Adefisayo added that the government would have to consult with stakeholders at the appropriate time on the subject.

“The attention of the Ministry of Education likewise the Honourable Commissioner for Education, Mrs. Folasade Adefisayo has been drawn to a write up being circulated on media space about a decision purportedly reached regarding the admission of under aged pupils into Junior Secondary Schools in Lagos State,” the statement sent to EduCeleb.com Tuesday evening read in part.

“This is to affirm that the Ministry of Education has indeed received concerns from various Stakeholders regarding this subject. As a consequence, meetings were held with various stakeholders and correspondence and minutes exchanged.

“However, no decision has been made and no Circular has been put out for implementation. It is pertinent to state that the subject was already under review in the Ministry of Education and has been a matter of great concern to the Administration.”

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The Commissioner referred the public to the National Policy on Education, which already determined the expected age of schooling for each level of education.

“Furthermore, the expected years of schooling at each level of education are entrenched in the National Policy on Education. The adverse effects of non-completion of the Primary School Curriculum and being rushed into Junior Secondary School before physical, mental, emotional and social maturity of children is well-researched and documented. Education is not only cognitive; other aspects must also be given due attention and consideration in order to produce a whole and functional youth who will be able to function effectively in the 21st Century.”

She stated further that meetings already scheduled with various categories of Stakeholders such as Executives of Private Schools’ Associations and Parent Bodies, Office of Education Quality Assurance, State Universal Basic Education Board, Lagos State Examination Board, All Nigeria Conference of Principals of Secondary Schools (ANCOPPS), Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT) among others which is in furtherance of the Administration’s spirit of inclusivity and wide consultation had to be postponed due to the exigencies of the State’s response to the COVID-19 Pandemic.

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According to her, the meetings were proposed to enable the State Government solicit the cooperation and participation of all Stakeholders in the rigorous implementation of the National Policy on Education in the State.

“The Public is hereby assured that as soon as normalcy returns, these meetings will be held, and details of the State’s final position on the matter will be made available to all Stakeholders, both digitally (online) and in hard copy through the State Media Platforms,” she stated.

Adefisayo stressed the importance of not putting the cart before the horse.

“As mentioned, there have been outlined concerns on this matter and all issues raised will be discussed and follow proper due process before implementation,” she added.

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