“Yes. It’s All Rubbish!”
We all are often quick to make this statement about things going on around us.
Some of the events of my life in the last few weeks have really got me thinking very wide.
I was having a discussion with a friend about the current economic situation in Nigeria. This discussion bordered on the issue of School Fees for Primary and Secondary schools in Lagos. And if you ask the average Nigerian the question about the number of kids they would wish to have, the most likely answer will be ‘two kids’. Ask them “Why?” The major reason you’ll hear them say is “School Fees!” And the only reason we won’t hear ‘one kid’ so much is for ‘security reasons’ – whatever that means.
It’s the end of another school session and owing to the economic situation in the country, quite a number of schools have had to increase fees to meet their rising expenditure. Can I blame the schools? I don’t think so! Even if these schools seem to be exploiting the average parent, the blame does not lie with them. After all, the private schools seem to have a monopoly on the level or standard that parents look out for – the lovely structure, the ambiance of the school environment, and all that.
And of course, what’s our usual response as parents? Try harder to work more and for longer hours to make more money to meet the increase in fees, except of course you’re one of the parents who always seem to have more than enough.
So, back to my conversation with my friend. I told her, as a Queen’s College Old Student, that I am inclined to seek admission for my girls in Queen’s College, and I still wasn’t sure about King’s College for my Son, because I don’t have enough information to decide for now. After all, the fees won’t be throat cutting! But, was that my only reason? Not necessarily. At the top of the list of reasons for me would be the fact that we have some of the brightest, most experienced teachers in these schools, and kids are likely to get a more rounded educational experience than most of the private secondary schools we have around.
So, whilst still having this conversation in mind, I was privileged to attend a Mentoring Symposium yesterday at Queen’s College inspired by one of the most challenging ladies I have met in a long time – selfless and always putting the needs of others above hers. And I told myself, I couldn’t have been at a better place at that time.
The whole essence of that symposium was to highlight the ideas behind mentoring, using Queen’s College students as a launchpad to other schools – all in a bid to bring back the ‘glory’ of the old Queen’s College and some of our other prestigious schools. As I sat there, I could only ask myself:
“What Can I do? How Can I play my part?”
In our generation, the answer to most of our challenges is to endeavor to make more money so we don’t experience hardship – at least in my part of the world.
There’s no power supply, I make more money to buy a generator and make sure it’s always fueled. There is a breakdown in the educational structure of Government schools, I make more money to be able to afford the ‘best of schools’ for my kids…And the list is endless.
Has it ever occurred to me to do something about the government school right beside me? Do I think I can make my little difference and hope it spreads across? What exactly can I do?
This has really got me thinking…I want to be the Change, I don’t want to keep asking for Change.
Be That Change!