Cleric tasks families, govt on academic excellence

Achieving academic excellence has been described as a joint responsibility of students, parents and the government.

This is the view of Senior Pastor of Grace and Glory Chapel, and a former head of Architecture Department, University of Lagos (UNILAG), Pastor Mike Adebamowo.

Speaking recently with The Guardian, he said that there was the compelling need for students, parents and government to ensure that excellent performances are not the exclusive preserves of a handful of students.

According to him, “Excellent performances by a handful of Nigerian students at international competitions are exceptional cases and cannot serve as a yardstick to assess education standards in the country.”

Adebamowo said that a student’s attitude to academic work was fundamental to the degree of excellence that they would end up achieving.

He, however, attributed the falling standard of education in the country to undue emphasis on paper qualification over skills.

The cleric said this fad had made some people to obtain certificates at the expense of knowledge and skills acquisition necessary for the promotion of excellence in their own disciplines.
“It is however, discouraging that much emphasis is laid on paper qualification over the need to be truly knowledgeable and skillful enough to undertake assignments. A student’s attitude to work reflects greatly on his or her academic work. A diligent and honest student will do all assignments as required and in the process, develop the skills needed. A diligent student will not attempt to cheat and will not give excuses for assignments not done,” he said.

The cleric advised that parents should not rush their children into secondary school at very tender age, but allow them to be mature enough to handle both academic and social issues.

In his words: “Parents must guide their children to build the right attitude towards learning. There will always be a remarkable difference in the efforts to learning in a child whose parents show concern to see that he or she studies because it is not enough to just provide materials.”

He urged the government to increase funding for education sector and support research at the tertiary level, which he described as the bedrock of knowledge and excellence.

He counseled stakeholders in the education sector to institute a new approach toward achieving academic excellence in Nigeria.

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