The Principal of Queens College, Lagos, Dr Tokunbo Yakubu-Oyinloye, has called on the Federal Government to establish more girls secondary schools in an effort to enhance girl-child education in the country.
Yakubu-Oyinloye disclosed this in on the sideline of the institution’s 57th Inter-House sports competition on Thursday in Lagos.
“I want to say that the Federal Government has done well in increasing access to education, especially girl-child education, just as it has ensured qualitative education in its 104 Unity Schools, especially Queens College.
“That is why most parents desire to enroll their girl-children into Queen’s College, the flagship for girl education in Nigeria, every academic year.
“To ensure that these parents also get this qualitative education that they are craving for, I will, therefore, appeal to the Federal Government to consider establishing more girls secondary colleges to cater for the needs of the girl-child, be it education, skills acquisition, sports, and other areas of learning.
“Currently, I will say we are not yet there when it comes to girl-child education,” she said.
According to her, more can be done to empower the girl-child through education, and government can do this by looking at establishing more of girls colleges, especially in Lagos, considering its large population.
“This can be easily achieved if the state government and the private sector can collaborate with the Federal Government in ensuring that this dream is realised.
“We must strive to deploy everything in our disposal to encourage and support girl-child education, boost their confidence and help them to realise their potential.
“Let us begin to train them to be future Presidents, Governors, Senators and other public office holders, rather than be wives of presidents, governors and all others,” the principal said.
She also appealed to the Federal Government to urgently intervene and help in the posting of more teachers to the college to replace retiring ones.
According to her, the college is currently facing dearth of teachers in key subjects such as Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry and even Hausa Language.
She said that the retirement of teachers handling these subjects had left a gap that needed to be filled urgently for quality service delivery as well as non-teaching staff.
“I want to also appeal for about 50 teachers in all to boost manpower just as we are also appealing for more interventions in the college, established in 1927, in the areas of infrastructure and amenities.
“This will further propel us in carrying out our mandates more efficiently and effectively.
“Our queens are making their marks in various areas of life both within and outside the country.
“The school also believes in the maxim ‘A sound mind in a sound body’ and we also believe in the all round development of our girls and in developing their talents, potentials and creative abilities. And that is why our school is first choice for many parents for their daughters,” the principal said.
In his speech, the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Education, Mr Sonny Echono, noted that the Federal Government was passionate about girl-child education and would continue to support the college.
Echono, who was represented by the Director, Basic and Secondary Education of the Ministry, Dr Lami Amodu, said the college had produced ladies who had excelled in their respective areas of endeavour.
He noted that the ministry had recognised games and school sports as an integral part of the school curriculum as no school would claim to have trained a child holistically without focusing on their psycho motor, which provides for the physical well being of learners.
“I know that Queen’s College Lagos is noted for high achievement, not only in academics, but also in sports.
“The ministry is aware of the challenges facing the development of sports in our colleges, especially inadequate sporting facilities and equipment.
“The solution lies in the massive injection of funds into the school system to enable institutions provide facilities and sustain the growth of school sports.
“I, therefore, crave your indulgence to call our friends and partners, the Parent Teacher Association, School Based Management Committee the Queen’s College Old Girls Association, individuals and corporate organisations to come to the aid of this college,” Echono said.