Parents of students in schools in Lagos, including are happy with the Lagos State Government’s resolution to re-open schools on the 21st of September.
72.73% of parents surveyed expressed confidence that their children’s schools are COVID-19 compliant and ready, while 27.27% are not sure the schools are ready. The above stats show that the efforts of the government in making sure the schools are well-prepared to resume during this pandemic are paying off and parents are grateful for this; however, 54% of the parents want a new session to start from 21st of September, effectively canceling the 3rd term like other state governments have done.
About 60% of the parents surveyed said that they got value for money from online schooling for their wards, but the challenges were many. They implored the Lagos State Government to work with the schools in solving these challenges, which include:
- Contents not rich and extensive enough.
- Work overload without assessment.
- Feedback mechanism from teachers and performance ratings for the children not properly done.
- No time focused /attention per child, making lecture times ineffective.
- Some parents also said it was stressful navigating the platforms.
- The greatest of all issues mentioned was data, as many lectures were held via video streaming for hours daily.
In all, the parents commended the efforts of the teachers who, regardless of the challenges, tried their best to get the children engaged during the lockdown period. They did this, even without proper warning or planning for online schooling.
Over 90% of the parents surveyed had attended public schools in the past; they encouraged the state government to do more for the public schools in this new normal digital education era, so that public school children wouldn’t be disadvantaged and lag behind.
The parents asked that public schools be equipped with e-learning facilities, internet access for teachers, an internet library for the students, training to skill up teachers in the use of Information Technology for teaching, and laptops for the schools. They also requested that the government provides low-cost funding for the required resources.
In all of this, 60% of the parents surveyed said they are willing to support the government, in a bid to digitally empower the public schools in the state.
Speaking to Sobowale Temiloluwa, CEO, Intelligent Interactive Limited, a digital analytics and technology company on the survey, he said:
“There can be no progress without measurement and feedback, whilst the government is doing their bit, they need to get feedback from all stakeholders, including parents, in order to innovate and improve. The pandemic came as a shock to all, and we were all forced to go online, without adequate preparation. Having done this for months, we need to look back, see where we performed well, and where we performed poorly and improve.”
“In the new normal, everyone needs access to the internet, and these resources must be provided, else, the public school children will lag behind. However, this Government cannot do it alone, parents that have benefited from the public schooling system in the past must also support the government to achieve the task of empowering all children with access to digital tools for education.”
“Many global technology giants in Nigeria and Globally, are supporting governments with grants and tools to aid e-learning, the government can reach out to these top companies for help and partnerships. But it must be known that digital education has come to stay, and there must be moves to scale up, so we can meet up with the demands of this new normal period,” he concluded.