The Director of TLS, Ikoyi, Mrs. Olubunmi Egbeyemi, has expressed concern over the attitude of some parents who send their children abroad at an early age to study, saying that such parents will miss the important aspects of parenting which include proper upbringing, teaching, helping and loving, as well as attending to their school matters.
Egbeyemi, who made this known during the school’s 2016 graduation ceremony, wandered how parents are able to sustain such attitude, saying that going to school is not all about what they teach them, but about parenting and having time to look after their children.
“If you want to develop a child, there is a lot to parenting than just sending them abroad; there are times when some children are emotionally distrust and when you are not there, how do you say you are parenting your child? From open days and parents’ forum and other important meetings, you get to know the teachers and vice-versa, and if there is any problem, it is a phone call away. The teachers in Nigeria are excellent.”
She said parents are sending their children abroad because of the decadence in the education system in Nigeria, while recalling her days in school when many parents abroad used to send their children to universities in Nigeria.
“I schooled in Nigeria even up to university level, we want to appeal to the federal government to look into education and make the higher institution a lot better. What I frown at is parents that have children between age 10 and 11 and are sending them to schools abroad.
“Yes they can afford it, but there is more to parenting than just the schools. I asked my younger friends what is wrong with the secondary schools in Nigeria and why they are taking them at 10. Do you want to be going to the UK every time for parents’ forum day and sports day?
“One parent told me that they don’t have to be there all the time. I asked them why they can’t allow them to turn 16 before they go. Good parenting skills are essential, they are skills that will not only help parents discipline their children, but also help strengthen the bond between parents and children.”
Egbeyemi stressed the need to encourage teachers in Nigeria by training them rather than going for expatriate staff that are more expensive to maintain. “There are a lot of experienced teachers in Nigeria who are creative; they need to do their own professional and self-development. The first time we employed an expatriate teacher, she didn’t understand our culture, though she was coming in with her wealth of experience, she is not the one that will teach in the classroom. For schools that have expatriate teachers, it takes a lot for them.”
The director, who also emphasised on the culture of discipline in the school said: “We don’t joke with it here. When you don’t teach children to respect other people’s property from this age, it is about discipline. When I employ teachers, aside the qualification I looked at the charisma to be a teacher and their dressing. It is a total package and even the teachers are so disciplined how much more the children?”