The State of Career Guidance in Nigeria – Moderated by Titi Ojo.
Mr. Collins Ezem a High school Teacher had the following to say.
- He began by narrating Nigeria’s educational policies to be very good on paper to a large extent from one government to the other, but unfortunately, it stops there with no implementation and accountability mechanism in place.
- He credits the government schools (public schools) for having some bit of a structure and improvements in the area of career guidance and counselling in the past few years.
- However, this has not been the case at the private schools since many if not all are business-oriented.
- They do not meet nor attain the standard and proper requirements before setting up, opening, and running schools on their own.
- He calls the above a misfit and malpractice in the practice of education because every child needs a counsellor tailored to meet their specific need.
- From his interactions with other counsellors, he discovers their lack of interest and passion in career guidance and counselling generally.
Coach Halima Career a Counsellor made the following contributions.
- She gives insights into the fact that students are neither pre-informed nor aware of the reason behind their choosing a particular course or line of study.
- She said it is true that when the students begin their university applications, the colleges and universities in most cases do not give the students their first course choices, or the second choices.
- They are then left with no choice; but pushed to fill up other faculties and departments, of which counselling is one; but having no prior desire or passion to study the program in the first place.
- From her experience as a graduate in counselling, more than 70% of coursemates in counselling, never had it as an option.
- Eventually, they all graduate and are brought back to society, employed to be career counsellors; the first challenge.
- Second challenge; counsellors are employed but are never provided with an enabling environment (i.e. those who are passionate about counselling) to function.
- Third challenge; lack of importance in counselling in the private schools in Nigeria which is quite unfortunately; being that most of our students (wards and children) are admitted there.
Aisha Aliyu the parent on the panel had the following to say when asked by the Moderator if the private school her children go have counsellors?
- Yes, they have guidance and counselling.
- I was talking to my daughter trying to find out because she had said she wanted to study architecture.
- I asked how many students she knows who want to study that particular field in her school. She said one of her friends.
- I then asked if it was because of her friend Hadiza that she wants to study architecture.
- I asked her if she had met with a guidance and counselling staff in her school, and she said no.
- I think that the schools have a policy where students wait untill they get to SS3 which I feel is too late, and the damage already done.
- The schools really do not have a stronghold in guidance and counselling in private schools.
- It is career counseling, not admission counseling until SS3.
- I encouraged our students here to be open up to their parents, guardian, teachers, and counsellors because, at the stage and level they are, all of this is critically important.
Career counseling, not admission counseling.
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